Probability, rational single-case decisions and the monty hall problem

Synthese 174 (3):331 - 340 (2010)
The application of probabilistic arguments to rational decisions in a single case is a contentious philosophical issue which arises in various contexts. Some authors (e.g. Horgan, Philos Pap 24:209–222, 1995; Levy, Synthese 158:139–151, 2007) affirm the normative force of probabilistic arguments in single cases while others (Baumann, Am Philos Q 42:71–79, 2005; Synthese 162:265–273, 2008) deny it. I demonstrate that both sides do not give convincing arguments for their case and propose a new account of the relationship between probabilistic reasoning and rational decisions. In particular, I elaborate a flaw in Baumann’s reductio of rational single-case decisions in a modified Monty Hall Problem.
Keywords Probability  Decision Theory  Rationality  Monty Hall Problem
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DOI 10.2307/40664911
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