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biovalueBiowert (ger.)

  • definition needed!

    the word ‘adaption’ is ambiguous, as it designates at least three different concepts, namely the following: A1 = suitability of a subsystem (organelle, organ, etc.) to a function, or high biovalue of the subsystem for the entire organism; A2 = adjustment of the organism to its environment; A3 = fertility of a biopopulation.

    Bunge, M. (1979). Treatise on Basic Philosophy, vol. 4. Ontology II: A World of Systems: 104.


    If a denotes a feature (organ, role, etc.) of an organism b, or some (biotic or abiotic) items in the environment of b, then a is valuable to b if, and only if, the possession of, or access to, a favors the ability of b to undergo its species-specific life history. Otherwise, a is either indifferent or disvaluable to b. […] a definition of “biovalue” solely in terms of survival would have to consider the reproductive system of an organism, or the specific function of reproduction respectively, as either worthless to the organism in question, because it does not contribute to the survival of the individual; or even as detrimental, as is the case with certain animals and plants in which copulation or reproduction is (naturally) followed by the death of the parental organism(s): think of mayflies and salmon.

    Mahner, M. & Bunge, M. (1997). Foundations of Biophilosophy: 159.