David Bourget (Western Ontario)
David Chalmers (ANU, NYU)
Rafael De Clercq
Jack Alan Reynolds
Learn more about PhilPapers
Synthese 158 (2):189 - 205 (2007)
I focus my discussion on the well-known Ellsberg paradox. I find good normative reasons for incorporating non-precise belief, as represented by sets of probabilities, in an Ellsberg decision model. This amounts to forgoing the completeness axiom of expected utility theory. Provided that probability sets are interpreted as genuinely indeterminate belief (as opposed to “imprecise” belief), such a model can moreover make the “Ellsberg choices” rationally permissible. Without some further element to the story, however, the model does not explain how an agent may come to have unique preferences for each of the Ellsberg options. Levi (1986, Hard choices: Decision making under unresolved conflict. Cambridge, New York: Cambridge University Press) holds that the extra element amounts to innocuous secondary “risk” or security considerations that are used to break ties when more than one option is rationally permissible. While I think a lexical choice rule of this kind is very plausible, I argue that it involves a greater break with xpected utility theory than mere violation of the ordering axiom.
|Keywords||Indeterminate belief Imprecise probability Ellsberg paradox Risk aversion|
|Categories||categorize this paper)|
Setup an account with your affiliations in order to access resources via your University's proxy server
Configure custom proxy (use this if your affiliation does not provide a proxy)
|Through your library|
References found in this work BETA
Prasanta S. Bandyopadhayay (1994). In Search of a Pointless Decision Principle. PSA: Proceedings of the Biennial Meeting of the Philosophy of Science Association 1994:260 - 269.
John Broome (1991). Weighing Goods: Equality, Uncertainty and Time. Wiley-Blackwell.
Peter Gärdenfors & Nils-Eric Sahlin (1982). Unreliable Probabilities, Risk Taking, and Decision Making. Synthese 53 (3):361-386.
Alan Hájek (2003). Conditional Probability Is the Very Guide of Life. In Kyburg Jr, E. Henry & Mariam Thalos (eds.), Probability is the Very Guide of Life: The Philosophical Uses of Chance. Open Court. 183--203.
Citations of this work BETA
Richard Bradley (2009). Revising Incomplete Attitudes. Synthese 171 (2):235 - 256.
Katie Siobhan Steele (2010). What Are the Minimal Requirements of Rational Choice? Arguments From the Sequential-Decision Setting. Theory and Decision 68 (4):463-487.
Similar books and articles
Alan Hájek & Michael Smithson (2012). Rationality and Indeterminate Probabilities. Synthese 187 (1):33-48.
Jeffrey Helzner (2009). On the Application of Multiattribute Utility Theory to Models of Choice. Theory and Decision 66 (4):301-315.
Horacio Arló-Costa & Jeffrey Helzner (2010). Ambiguity Aversion: The Explanatory Power of Indeterminate Probabilities. Synthese 172 (1):37 - 55.
Gerd Weinrich (1999). Nondegenerate Intervals of No-Trade Prices for Risk Averse Traders. Theory and Decision 46 (1):79-99.
Paul Weirich (2001). Risk's Place in Decision Rules. Synthese 126 (3):427 - 441.
Wei Xiong (2011). Implications of the Dutch Book: Following Ramsey’s Axioms. Frontiers of Philosophy in China 6 (2):334-344.
Paul Weirich (1986). Expected Utility and Risk. British Journal for the Philosophy of Science 37 (4):419-442.
Lyle Zynda (2000). Representation Theorems and Realism About Degrees of Belief. Philosophy of Science 67 (1):45-69.
Martin Peterson (2006). Indeterminate Preferences. Philosophical Studies 130 (2):297-320.
Added to index2009-01-28
Total downloads30 ( #62,346 of 1,102,039 )
Recent downloads (6 months)5 ( #68,255 of 1,102,039 )
How can I increase my downloads?