David Bourget (Western Ontario)
David Chalmers (ANU, NYU)
Rafael De Clercq
Jack Alan Reynolds
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British Journal for the Philosophy of Science 42 (2):157-176 (1991)
Probabilistic accounts of causality have long had trouble with ‘spurious’ evidential correlations. Such correlations are also central to the case for causal decision theory—the argument that evidential decision theory is inadequate to cope with certain sorts of decision problem. However, there are now several strong defences of the evidential theory. Here I present what I regard as the best defence, and apply it to the probabilistic approach to causality. I argue that provided a probabilistic theory appeals to the notions of agency and effective strategy, it can avoid the problem of spurious causes. I show that such an appeal has other advantages; and argue that it is not illegitimate, even for a causal realist.
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Citations of this work BETA
Arif Ahmed (2010). Causation and Decision. Proceedings of the Aristotelian Society 110 (2pt2):111-131.
Eric G. Cavalcanti (2010). Causation, Decision Theory, and Bell's Theorem: A Quantum Analogue of the Newcomb Problem. British Journal for the Philosophy of Science 61 (3):569-597.
Stephen Barker (2003). Counterfactual Analyses of Causation: The Problem of Effects and Epiphenomena Revisited. Noûs 37 (1):133–150.
Isabelle Drouet (2012). Causal Reasoning, Causal Probabilities, and Conceptions of Causation. Studies in History and Philosophy of Science Part C 43 (4):761-768.
Phyllis Kirstin McKay (2007). Freedom, Fiction and Evidential Decision Theory. Erkenntnis 66 (3):393 - 407.
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