In this paper Kertesz focuses on the attribution of goal-directedness to biological systems, like agents and even certain subsystems. Classical cybernetics was rightfully criticized by some for not being able to reduce teleology neither to behavioural features nor to mechanisms. First, Kertesz shows that the behavioural approach can be amended so that it can differentiate between real and ersatz goal-directedness. Then he turns to the mechanism side of things and link up this behavioural approach with a new system theoretical view according to which biological agents realize special causal regimes that involve what some philosophers started to call self-constraining systems referring to a specific form of self-determination. If right, it might turn out that the old ideas of cybernetics are not as hopeless as they seemed to be.
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