David Bourget (Western Ontario)
David Chalmers (ANU, NYU)
Rafael De Clercq
Jack Alan Reynolds
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American Political Science Review 98 (3):495-513 (2004)
I model sequential decisions over multiple interconnected propositions and investigate path-dependence in such decisions. The propositions and their interconnections are represented in propositional logic. A sequential decision process is path-dependent if its outcome depends on the order in which the propositions are considered. Assuming that earlier decisions constrain later ones, I prove three main results: First, certain rationality violations by the decision-making agent—individual or group—are necessary and sufficient for path-dependence. Second, under some conditions, path-dependence is unavoidable in decisions made by groups. Third, path-dependence makes decisions vulnerable to strategic agenda setting and strategic voting. I also discuss escape routes from path-dependence. My results are relevant to discussions on collective consistency and reason-based decision-making, focusing not only on outcomes, but also on underlying reasons, beliefs, and constraints.
|Keywords||Judgment aggregation Path-dependence Sequential decisions Discursive dilemma|
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Citations of this work BETA
Christian List (2006). The Discursive Dilemma and Public Reason. Ethics 116 (2):362-402.
Christian List (2012). The Theory of Judgment Aggregation: An Introductory Review. Synthese 187 (1):179-207.
Philippe Mongin (2012). The Doctrinal Paradox, the Discursive Dilemma, and Logical Aggregation Theory. Theory and Decision 73 (3):315-355.
Philip Pettit (2006). When to Defer to Majority Testimony – and When Not. Analysis 66 (291):179–187.
Christian List & Philip Pettit (2006). Group Agency and Supervenience. Southern Journal of Philosophy 44 (S1):85-105.
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