Time and chance: a statistical hendiadys


  • Italo Scardovi Alma Mater Studiorum - Università di Bologna




Time and chance are the intellectual coordinates of a new knowledge of natural reality founded on phenomena characterised by ‘becoming’: entropic molecular processes, radioactive atomic processes, chemical processes, chaotic dynamic systems and biological evolution, are all paridigms in which time and chance act as “operators”. The intertwining of time and chance is tightened by the intermediation of a statistical component, depending on the number of degrees of freedom, which is a phenomenal condition linked to empirical processes and to the directions of the time arrow which points towards an increasing probability. Chance breaks the symmetry of time; by making the ‘becoming’ irreversible, it links the microworld to the macroworld and offers an image of nature where order and disorder, causality and casualty, certainty and uncertainty coexist. Thus, the meeting of time and chance is not an antithesis but rather a dialectic process or, better yet, a statistical hendiadys.


How to Cite

Scardovi, I. (2005). Time and chance: a statistical hendiadys. Statistica, 65(1), 5–25. https://doi.org/10.6092/issn.1973-2201/75