The essay deals with some problems concerning the logical structure of evidential inferences. First of all some premises are stated, mainly about the nature and the function of evidence in connection with the theories of judicial decisions. Then the core of the essay is devoted to the analysis of such inferences, based maily upon the inferential model proposed by Toulmin. Such a model is used in order to look at the most important and frequent situations in which complex sets of inferences are necessary in order to achieve a rationally justified decision. A final part is devoted specifically to the problem of statistical evidence, in general and in the cases of toxic torts.
1. Some premises. — 2. Some theories of factual decision. — 3. Models of inferential reasoning. 3.1. Complex inferences. — 4. A special problem: statistical evidence. 4.1. A doubtful case: toxic torts. Selected bibliography
Emerito dell’Università di Pavia (Italia). Cátedra de Cultura Jurídica, Girona (Spain)
Italian-Spanish Review of Procedural Law