We present the inconsistency-adaptive deonticlogic DP r , a nonmonotonic logic for dealing with conflicts between normative statements. On the one hand, this logic does not lead to explosion in view of normative conflicts such as O A ∧ O ∼A, O A ∧ P ∼A or even O A ∧ ∼O A. On the other hand, DP r still verifies all intuitively reliable inferences valid in Standard DeonticLogic (SDL). DP r interprets (...) a given premise set ‘as normally as possible’ with respect to SDL. Whereas some SDL-rules are verified unconditionally by DP r , others are verified conditionally. The latter are applicable unless they rely on formulas that turn out to behave inconsistently in view of the premises. This dynamic process is mirrored by the proof theory of DP r. (shrink)
John Horty effectively develops deonticlogic (the logic of ethical concepts like obligation and permission) against the background of a formal theory of agency. He incorporates certain elements of decision theory to set out a new deontic account of what agents ought to do under various conditions over extended periods of time. Offering a conceptual rather than technical emphasis, Horty's framework allows a number of recent issues from moral theory to be set out clearly and discussed (...) from a uniform point of view. (shrink)
Deonticlogic is standardly conceived as the logic of true statements about the existence of obligations and permissions. In his last writings on the subject, G. H. von Wright criticized this view of deonticlogic, stressing the rationality of norm imposition as the proper foundation of deonticlogic. The present paper is an attempt to advance such an account of deonticlogic using the formal apparatus of update semantics and dynamic (...) class='Hi'>logic. That is, we first define norm systems and a semantics of norm performatives as transformations of the norm system. Then a static modal logic for norm propositions is defined on that basis. In the course of this exposition we stress the performative nature of (i) free choice permission, (ii) the sealing legal principle and (iii) the social nature of permission. That is, (i) granting a disjunctive permission means granting permission for both disjuncts; (ii) non-prohibition does not entail permission, but the authority can declare that whatever he does not forbid is thereby permitted; and (iii) granting permission to one person means that all others are committed to not prevent the invocation of that permission. (shrink)
This paper analyzes Mally’s system of deonticlogic, introduced in his The Basic Laws of Ought: Elements of the Logic of Willing (1926). We discuss Mally’s text against the background of some contributions in the literature which show that Mally’s axiomatic system for deonticlogic is flawed, in so far as it derives, for an arbitrary A, the theorem “A ought to be the case if and only if A is the case”, which represents a (...) collapse of obligation. We then try to sort out and understand which axioms are responsible for the collapse and consider two ways of amending Mally’s system: (i) by changing its original underlying logical basis, that is classical logic, and (ii) by modifying Mally’s axioms. (shrink)
Situationist deonticlogic is a model of that fraction of normative discourse which refers to only one situation and one set of alternatives. As we can see from a whole series of well-known paradoxes, standard deonticlogic (SDL) is seriously mistaken even at the situationist level. In this paper it is shown how a more realistic deonticlogic can be based on the assumption that prescriptive predicates satisfy the property of contranegativity. A satisfactory account (...) of situation-specific norms is a necessary prerequisite for a successful treatment of more complex normative structures. (shrink)
A new possible world semantics for deonticlogic is proposed. Its intuitive basis is that prohibitive predicates (such as wrong and prohibited) have the property of negativity, i.e. that what is worse than something wrong is itself wrong. The logic of prohibitive predicates is built on this property and on preference logic. Prescriptive predicates are defined in terms of prohibitive predicates, according to the well-known formula ought = wrong that not. In this preference-based deontic (...) class='Hi'>logic (PDL), those theorems that give rise to the paradoxes of standard deonticlogic (SDL) are not obtained. (E.g., O(p & q) Op & Oq and Op O(p v q)) are theorems of SDL but not of PDL. The more plausible theorems of SDL, however, can be derived in PDL. (shrink)
This multiplex semantics incorporates multiple relations of deontic accessibility or multiple preference rankings on alternative worlds to represent distinct normative standards. This provides a convenient framework for deonticlogic that allows conflicts of obligation, due either to conflicts between normative standards or to incoherence within a single standard. With the multiplex structures, two general senses of "ought" may be distinguished, an indefinite sense under which something is obligatory when it is enjoined by some normative standard and a (...) core sense for when something is enjoined by all normative standards. Multiple normative standards may themselves be given a preferential order; this leads to a concept of ranked obligation. This paper presents the foundations of this multiplex semantics and the propositional deontic logics they define. (shrink)
Whereas geometrical oppositions (logical squares and hexagons) have been so far investigated in many fields of modal logic (both abstract and applied), the oppositional geometrical side of “deonticlogic” (the logic of “obligatory”, “forbidden”, “permitted”, . . .) has rather been neglected. Besides the classical “deontic square” (the deontic counterpart of Aristotle’s “logical square”), some interesting attempts have nevertheless been made to deepen the geometrical investigation of the deontic oppositions: Kalinowski (La logique des (...) normes, PUF, Paris, 1972) has proposed a “deontic hexagon” as being the geometrical representation of standard deonticlogic, whereas Joerden (jointly with Hruschka, in Archiv für Rechtsund Sozialphilosophie 73:1, 1987), McNamara (Mind 105:419, 1996) and Wessels (Die gute Samariterin. Zur Struktur der Supererogation, Walter de Gruyter, Berlin, 2002) have proposed some new “deontic polygons” for dealing with conservative extensions of standard deonticlogic internalising the concept of “supererogation”. Since 2004 a new formal science of the geometrical oppositions inside logic has appeared, that is “ n -opposition theory”, or “NOT”, which relies on the notion of “logical bi-simplex of dimension m ” ( m = n − 1). This theory has received a complete mathematical foundation in 2008, and since then several extensions. In this paper, by using it, we show that in standard deonticlogic there are in fact many more oppositional deontic figures than Kalinowski’s unique “hexagon of norms” (more ones, and more complex ones, geometrically speaking: “deontic squares”, “deontic hexagons”, “deontic cubes”, . . ., “deontic tetraicosahedra”, . . .): the real geometry of the oppositions between deontic modalities is composed by the aforementioned structures (squares, hexagons, cubes, . . ., tetraicosahedra and hyper-tetraicosahedra), whose complete mathematical closure happens in fact to be a “deontic 5-dimensional hyper-tetraicosahedron” (an oppositional very regular solid). (shrink)
The paper discusses ten philosophical problems in deonticlogic: how to formally represent norms, when a set of norms may be termed ‘coherent’, how to deal with normative conﬂicts, how contraryto-duty obligations can be appropriately modeled, how dyadic deontic operators may be redeﬁned to relate to sets of norms instead of preference relations between possible worlds, how various concepts of permission can be accommodated, how meaning postulates and counts-as conditionals can be taken into account, and how sets (...) of norms may be revised and merged. The problems are discussed from the viewpoint of input/output logic as developed by van der Torre & Makinson. We argue that norms, not ideality, should take the central position in deontic semantics, and that a semantics that represents norms, as input/output logic does, provides helpful tools for analyzing, clarifying and solving the problems of deonticlogic. (shrink)
Standard dyadic deonticlogic (as well as standard deonticlogic) has recently come under attack by moral philosophers who maintain that the axioms of standard dyadic deonticlogic are biased against moral theories which generate moral conflicts. Since moral theories which generate conflicts are at least logically tenable, it is argued, standard dyadic deonticlogic should be modified so that the set of logically possible moral theories includes those which generate such conflicts. (...) I argue that (1) there are only certain types of moral conflicts which are interesting, and which have worried moral theorists, (2) the modification of standard dyadic deonticlogic along the lines suggested by those who defend the possibility of moral conflicts makes possible only uninteresting types of moral conflicts, and (3) the general strategy of piecemeal modification standard dyadic deonticlogic is misguided: the possibility of interesting moral conflicts cannot be achieved in that way. (shrink)
In Meyer’s promising account  deonticlogic is reduced to a dynamic logic. Meyer claims that with his account “we get rid of most (if not all) of the nasty paradoxes that have plagued traditional deonticlogic.” But as was shown by van der Meyden in , Meyer’s logic also contains a paradoxical formula. In this paper we will show that another paradox can be proven, one which also effects Meyer’s “solution” to contrary to (...) duty obligations and his logic in general. (shrink)
This paper suggests that it should be possible to develop dynamic deonticlogic as a counterpart to the very successful development of dynamic doxastic logic (or dynamic epistemic logic, as it is more often called). The ambition, arrived at towards the end of the paper, is to give formal representations of agentive concepts such as “the agent is about to do (has just done) α ” as well as of deontic concepts such as “it is (...) obligatory (permissible, forbidden) for the agent to do α ”, where α stands for an action (event). (shrink)
If a native of India asserts "Killing cattle is wrong" and a Nebraskan asserts "Killing cattle is not wrong", and both judgments agree with their respective moralities and both moralities are internally consistent, then the moral relativist says both judgments are fully correct. At this point relativism bifurcates. One branch which we call content relativism denies that the two people are contradicting each other. The idea is that the content of a moral judgment is a function of the overall moral (...) point of view from which it proceeds. The second branch which we call truth value relativism affirms that the two judgments are contradictory. Truth value relativism appears to be logically incoherent. How can contradictory judgments be fully correct? For though there will be a sense of correctness in which each judgment is correct — namely by that of being correct relative to the morality relative to which each was expressed — if contradictory, the judgments cannot both be true, and thus cannot both be correct in this most basic sense of correctness. We defend truth value relativism against this sort of charge of logical incoherence by showing it can be accommodated by the existing semantical metatheories of deonticlogic. Having done this we go on to argue that truth value relativism is the best version of relativism. (shrink)
The ideal world semantics of standard deonticlogic identifies our obligations with how we would act in an ideal world. However, to act as if one lived in an ideal world is bad moral advice, associated with wishful thinking rather than well-considered moral deliberation. Ideal world semantics gives rise to implausible logical principles, and the metaphysical arguments that have been put forward in its favour turn out to be based on a too limited view of truth-functional representation. It (...) is argued that ideal world semantics should be given up in favour of other, more plausible uses of possible worlds for modelling normative subject-matter. (shrink)
In 1926, Mally presented the first formal system of deonticlogic. His system had several consequences which Mally regarded as surprising but defensible. It also, however, has the consequence that A is obligatory if and only if A is the case, which is unacceptable from the point of view of any reasonable deonticlogic. We describe Mally's system and discuss how it might reasonably be repaired.
This paper describes and compares the first step in modern semantic theory for deonticlogic which appeared in works of Stig Kanger, Jaakko Hintikka, Richard Montague and Saul Kripke in late 50s and early 60s. Moreover, some further developments as well as systematizations are also noted.
I outline six components of a comprehensive proposal for overhauling the foundations of deonticlogic. (1) Actions and prescriptions are temporally indexed; more precisely, they attach to nodes of a tree in a branching time structure. (2) Actions are (modeled as) sets of branches and can be coarse- or fine-grained depending on whether or not they have proper subsets which are also actions. (3) Prescriptions have satisfaction and violation sets; these are sets of branches which may—but need not—be (...) or include actions. (4) Prescriptive propositions, which state that an action is obligatory/permitted/forbidden according to a given prescription, are defined by relating the action with the satisfaction and violation sets of the prescription. (5) Conditional prescriptions can—but need not—be derived from unconditional or even from other conditional ones. (6) Thick prescriptions, in contrast to thin ones, prescribe or proscribe actions with varying intensities, and can have embedded subprescriptions (some of which are negative, namely “contraryto-duty”). Most of the above components are inspired by the literature, but their combination is novel. (shrink)
There seems to be no clear consensus in the existing literature about the role of deonticlogic in legal knowledge representation — in large part, we argue, because of an apparent misunderstanding of what deonticlogic is, and a misplaced preoccupation with the surface formulation of legislative texts. Our aim in this paper is to indicate, first, which aspects of legal reasoning are addressed by deonticlogic, and then to sketch out the beginnings of (...) a methodology for its use in the analysis and representation of law.The essential point for which we argue is that deonticlogic — in some form or other —needs to be taken seriously whenever it is necessary to make explicit, and then reason about, the distinction between what ought to be the case and what is the case, or as we also say, between the ideal and the actual. We take the library regulations at Imperial College as the main illustration, and small examples from genuinely legal domains to introduce specific points. In conclusion, we touch on the role of deonticlogic in the development of the theory of normative positions. (shrink)
In "Doing Well Enough: Toward a Logic for Common Sense Morality", Paul McNamara sets out a semantics for a deonticlogic which contains the operator It is supererogatory that. As well as having a binary accessibility relation on worlds, that semantics contains a relative ordering relation, . For worlds u, v and w, we say that u w v when v is at least as good as u according to the standards of w. In this paper we (...) axiomatize logics complete over three versions of the semantics. We call the strongest of these logics DWE for Doing Well Enough. (shrink)
The purpose of this paper is to eÂ»tahlish some connections between precedent-based reasoning as it is studied in the field of Artificial Intelligence and Law, particularly in the work of Ashley, and two other fields: deonticlogic and nonmonotonic logic. First, a deonticlogic is described that allows lor sensible reasoning in the presence of conflicting norms. Second, a simplified version of Ashley's account of precedent-based reasoning is reformulated within the framework of this deontic (...)logic. Finally, some ideas from the theory of nonmonotonic inheritance are employed to show how Ashley's account might be elaborated to allow for a richer representation of the process of argumentation. (shrink)
Some requirements concerning deonticlogic are formulated and discussed. Stress is laid on the need to distinguish between theories and deductive systems. It is argued that deontic theories need not be closed under the rule of detachment. Two deontic calculi, called DSC1, DSC2, are presented and talked over.
Some people approve of certain general rules of behavior, or some concrete cases. The others disapprove of or are indifferent to them. In this paper I suggest an axiom system which formalizes the use of these utterances. It may be considered as a special (individualistic) approach to deonticlogic.
Most of the papers in this collection are from the First International Workshop on DeonticLogic in Computer Science, DEON91, held in Amsterdam in December 1991. AI (especially AI and law, and knowledge representation) and formal system specification are the computer science communities that would seem to be most interested. In fact, this reviewer, a researcher in AI, was surprised to find common ground with a visiting researcher in distributed systems by discussing the contents of this book: he (...) being in the same field as Wieringa, and I being in the same field as Meyer. (shrink)
We consider an infinite hierarchy of systems of Alethic Modal Logic with so-called Levels of Perfection, and add to them suitable definitions of such interesting deontic categories as those of supererogation, offence, conditional obligation and conditional permission. We then state three problems concerning the proper characterization of the resulting logic(s) for our defined notions, and discuss two of these problems in some detail.
We develop a multi-agent deontic action logic to study the logical behaviour of two types of deontic conditionals: (1) conditional obligations, having the form "If group H were to perform action aH, then, in group F's interest, group G ought to perform action aG" and (2) conditional permissions, having the form "If group H were to perform action aH, then, in group F's interest, group G may perform action aG". First, we define a formal language for multi-agent (...)deontic action logic and a class of consequentialist models to interpret the formulas of the language. Second, we define a transformation that converts any strategic game into a consequentialist model. Third, we show that an outcome a* is a Nash equilibrium of a strategic game if and only if a conjunction of certain conditional permissions is true in the consequentialist model that results from the transformation of that strategic game. (shrink)
The logic of an ought operator O is contranegative with respect to an underlying preference relation if it satisfies the property Op & (¬p)(¬q) Oq. Here the condition that is interpolative ((p (pq) q) (q (pq) p)) is shown to be necessary and sufficient for all -contranegative preference relations to satisfy the plausible deontic postulates agglomeration (Op & OqO(p&q)) and disjunctive division (O(p&q) Op Oq).
Although it seems intuitively clear that acts of requesting are different from acts of commanding, it is not very easy to sate their differences precisely in dynamic terms. In this paper we show that it becomes possible to characterize, at least partially, the effects of acts of requesting and compare them with the effects of acts of commanding by combining dynamified deonticlogic with epistemic logic. One interesting result is the following: each act of requesting is appropriately (...) differentiated from an act of commanding with the same content, but for each act of requesting, there is another act of commanding with much more complex content which updates models in exactly the same way as it does. We will also consider an application of our characterization of acts of requesting to acts of asking yes-no questions. It yields a straightforward formalization of the view of acts of asking questions as requests for information. (shrink)
I am idebted to members of the Wellington Logic Seminar for useful discussions of work of which this essay forms part, in particular to M. J. Cresswell for comments in the earlier stages of the investigation and to R. I. Goldblatt who suggested the definition ofB infD supu and made numerous other suggestions.
In this paper, the set-theoretic approach in the logical theory of normative systems is extended using Broome’s definition of the normative code function. The syntax and semantics for first order metanormative language is defined, and metanormative language is applied in the formalization of the basic principles in Broome’s approach and in the construction of a logical typology of normative systems. Special attention is given to the types of normative systems which are not definable in terms of the properties of singular (...) sets of requirements (e.g. the realization equivalence of codes, the social compatibility of codes, and the compatibility of codes issued by different normative sources). Examples are given of the application of the typology in the interpretation of philosophical texts. Von Wright’s hypothesis on the connection of logical properties of normative systems, conceived set-theoretically, with standard deonticlogic is proved by introducing the translation function between the metanormative language and the restricted language of standard deonticlogic. The translation reveals that von Wright’s hypothesis must be appended. The problems of narrow and wide scope readings of the deontic conditionals and of the meaning of iterated deontic operators are addressed using the distinction between relative and absolute normative codes. The theorem on the existence of a realization equivalent absolute code for any relative code is proved. (shrink)
In this paper we present an executable approach to model interactions between agents that involve sensitive, privacy-related information. The approach is formal and based on deontic, epistemic and action logic. It is conceptually related to the Belief-Desire-Intention model of Bratman. Our approach uses the concept of sphere as developed by Waltzer to capture the notion that information is provided mostly with restrictions regarding its application. We use software agent technology to create an executable approach. Our agents hold beliefs (...) about the world, have goals and commitment to the goals. They have the capacity to reason about different courses of action, and communicate with one another. The main new ingredient of our approach is the idea to model information itself as an intentional agent whose main goal it is to preserve the integrity of the information and regulate its dissemination. We demonstrate our approach by applying it to an important process in the insurance industry: applying for a life insurance. In this paper we will: (1) describe the challenge organizational complexity poses in moral reasoning about informational relationships; (2) propose an executable approach, using software agents with reasoning capacities grounded in modal logic, in which moral constraints on informational relatio nships can be modeled and investigated; (3) describe the details of our approach, in which information itself is modeled as an intentional agent in its own right; (4) test and validate it by applying it to a concrete ‘hard case’ from the insurance industry; and (5) conclude that our approach upholds and offers potential for both research and practical application. (shrink)
Traditional moral theories appear to be unable to give a credible account of the relationship between deontic and axiological concepts, i.e. duty and value. Of the two traditional solutions to this problem, one emphasises the independence of the two realms, whereas Mill argues that duty is definable in terms of goodness. In this paper I present Meinong's Law of Omission which offers, in my opinion, a promising alternative to these two traditional views.
The purpose of the paper is to present a logical framework that allow to formalize a kind of prima facie duties, defeasible conditional duties, indefeasible conditional duties and actual (indefeasible) duties, as well as to show their logical interconnections.
Two parallelism hypotheses have been adopted and the third one on their relationship has been put forward. The illocutionary logic hypothesis states that the logic of linguistic commitments runs parallel to the logic of intentionality. The normative pragmatics hypothesis states that the logic of utterances runs parallel to the logic of linguistic commitments. According to the third stance or the logic projection hypothesis, the logic of utterances is the origin of all other logics (...) used in describing psychological and social realities. Consequently, the imperative logic or logic of utterances constitutes an independent but not self-sufﬁcient research topic. The logic of utterances manifests itself in its meaning effects such as deontic and bouletic ones. It can be studied only in relation to deontic logics of the hearer’s obligation and the speaker’s linguistic commitments and in relation to logics of intentionality of the speaker’s expression and the hearer’s impression. Therefore, research in logic of imperative and other utterances must include investigation of relations between logics. (shrink)
In this paper, I apply the "conceptual role semantics" approach that I have proposed elsewhere (according to which the meaning of normative terms is given by their role in practical reasoning or deliberation) to the meaning of the term 'ought'. I argue that this approach can do three things: It can give an adequate explanation of the special connection that normative judgments have to practical reasoning and motivation for action. It can give an adequate account of why the central principles (...) of deonticlogic are correct. It can give an explanation of the precise ways in which the term 'ought' is systematically context-sensitive, so that the term expresses different (but systematically related) concepts in different contexts. (shrink)
The formal language studied in this paper contains two categories of expressions, terms and formulas. Terms express events, formulas propositions. There are infinitely many atomic terms and complex terms are made up by Boolean operations. Where and are terms the atomic formulas have the form = ( is the same as ), Forb ( is forbidden) and Perm ( is permitted). The formulae are truth functional combinations of these. An algebraic and a model theoretic account of validity are given and (...) an axiomatic system is provided for which they are characteristic.The closure principle, that what is not forbidden is permitted is shown to hold at the level of outcomes but not at the level of events. In the two final sections some other operators are considered and a semantics in terms of action games. (shrink)
In this paper I argue for modesty concerning what theoretical reason can accomplish in the moral dilemmas debate. Specifically, I contend that philosophers' conclusions for or against moral dilemmas are driven less by rational argument and more by how the moral world intuitively appears to them.