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  1. Empirical Rules of Thumb for Choice Under Uncertainty.Rolf Aaberge - 2011 - Theory and Decision 71 (3):431-438.
    A substantial body of empirical evidence shows that individuals overweight extreme events and act in conflict with the expected utility theory. These findings were the primary motivation behind the development of a rank-dependent utility theory for choice under uncertainty. The purpose of this paper is to demonstrate that some simple empirical rules of thumb for choice under uncertainty are consistent with the rank-dependent utility theory.
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  2. Invariant Multiattribute Utility Functions.Ali E. Abbas - 2010 - Theory and Decision 68 (1-2):69-99.
    We present a method to characterize the preferences of a decision maker in decisions with multiple attributes. The approach modifies the outcomes of a multivariate lottery with a multivariate transformation and observes the change in the decision maker’s certain equivalent. If the certain equivalent follows this multivariate transformation, we refer to this situation as multiattribute transformation invariance, and we derive the functional form of the utility function. We then show that any additive or multiplicative utility function that is formed of (...)
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  3. Well-Being and Fair Distribution: Beyond Cost-Benefit Analysis.Matthew D. Adler - 2011 - Oxford University Press.
    This book addresses a range of relevant theoretical issues, including the possibility of an interpersonally comparable measure of well-being, or “utility” metric; the moral value of equality, and how that bears on the form of the social welfare function; social choice under uncertainty; and the possibility of integrating considerations of individual choice and responsibility into the social-welfare-function framework. This book also deals with issues of implementation, and explores how survey data and other sources of evidence might be used to calibrate (...)
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  4. Causal Decision Theory: A Counterexample.A. Ahmed - 2013 - Philosophical Review 122 (2):289-306.
    The essay presents a novel counterexample to Causal Decision Theory (CDT). Its interest is that it generates a case in which CDT violates the very principles that motivated it in the first place. The essay argues that the objection applies to all extant formulations of CDT and that the only way out for that theory is a modification of it that entails incompatibilism. The essay invites the reader to find this consequence of CDT a reason to reject it.
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  5. Weak Utilities From Acyclicity.J. C. R. Alcantud - 1999 - Theory and Decision 47 (2):185-196.
    In this paper weak utilities are obtained for acyclic binary relations satisfying a condition weaker than semicontinuity on second countable topological spaces. In fact, in any subset of such a space we obtain a weak utility that characterizes the maximal elements as maxima of the function. The addition of separability of the relation yields the existence of semicontinuous representations. This property of the utility provides a result of existence of maximal elements for a class of spaces that include compact spaces. (...)
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  6. Continuous Utility Functions Through Scales.J. C. R. Alcantud, G. Bosi, M. J. Campión, J. C. Candeal, E. Induráin & C. Rodríguez-Palmero - 2008 - Theory and Decision 64 (4):479-494.
    We present here a direct elementary construction of continuous utility functions on perfectly separable totally preordered sets that does not make use of the well-known Debreu’s open gap lemma. This new construction leans on the concept of a separating countable decreasing scale. Starting from a perfectly separable totally ordered structure, we give an explicit construction of a separating countable decreasing scale, from which we show how to get a continuous utility map.
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  7. Cardinal Utility.Maurice Allais - 1991 - Theory and Decision 31 (2-3):99-140.
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  8. Critical Examination of the New Foundation of Utility.Yakov Amihud - 1979 - In Maurice Allais & Ole Hagen (eds.), Expected Utility Hypotheses and the Allais Paradox. D. Reidel. pp. 149--160.
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  9. Models of Preference Reversals and Personal Rules: Do They Require Maximizing a Utility Function with a Specific Structure?Horacio Arló-Costa - 2005 - Behavioral and Brain Sciences 28 (5):650-651.
    One of the reasons for adopting hyperbolic discounting is to explain preference reversals. Another is that this value structure suggests an elegant theory of the will. I examine the capacity of the theory to solve Newcomb's problem. In addition, I compare Ainslie's account with other procedural theories of choice that seem at least equally capable of accommodating reversals of preference.
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  10. On Risk and Rationality.Brad Armendt - 2013 - Erkenntnis 79 (S6):1-9.
    It is widely held that the influence of risk on rational decisions is not entirely explained by the shape of an agent’s utility curve. Buchak (Erkenntnis, 2013, Risk and rationality, Oxford University Press, Oxford, in press) presents an axiomatic decision theory, risk-weighted expected utility theory (REU), in which decision weights are the agent’s subjective probabilities modified by his risk-function r. REU is briefly described, and the global applicability of r is discussed. Rabin’s (Econometrica 68:1281–1292, 2000) calibration theorem strongly suggests that (...)
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  11. Frank Plumpton Ramsey.Brad Armendt - 2005 - In Sahotra Sarkar & Jessica Pfeifer (eds.), The Philosophy of Science: An Encyclopedia. Routledge. pp. 671-681.
    On the work of Frank Ramsey, emphasizing topics most relevant to philosophy of science.
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  12. Dutch Books, Additivity, and Utility Theory.Brad Armendt - 1993 - Philosophical Topics 21 (1):1-20.
    One guide to an argument's significance is the number and variety of refutations it attracts. By this measure, the Dutch book argument has considerable importance.2 Of course this measure alone is not a sure guide to locating arguments deserving of our attention—if a decisive refutation has really been given, we are better off pursuing other topics. But the presence of many and varied counterarguments at least suggests that either the refutations are controversial, or that their target admits of more than (...)
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  13. Conditional Preference and Causal Expected Utility.Brad Armendt - 1988 - In William Harper & Brian Skyrms (eds.), Causation in Decision, Belief Change, and Statistics. Kluwer Academic Publishers. pp. 3-24.
    Sequel to Armendt 1986, ‘A Foundation for Causal Decision Theory.’ The representation theorem for causal decision theory is slightly revised, with the addition of a new restriction on lotteries and a new axiom (A7). The discussion gives some emphasis to the way in which appropriate K-partitions are characterized by relations found among the agent’s conditional preferences. The intended interpretation of conditional preference is one that embodies a sensitivity to the agent’s causal beliefs.
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  14. A Foundation for Causal Decision Theory.Brad Armendt - 1986 - Topoi 5 (1):3-19.
    The primary aim of this paper is the presentation of a foundation for causal decision theory. This is worth doing because causal decision theory (CDT) is philosophically the most adequate rational decision theory now available. I will not defend that claim here by elaborate comparison of the theory with all its competitors, but by providing the foundation. This puts the theory on an equal footing with competitors for which foundations have already been given. It turns out that it will also (...)
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  15. Neutrality and Utility.Richard J. Arneson - 1990 - Canadian Journal of Philosophy 20 (2):215 - 240.
  16. Value and Unacceptable Risk.Gustaf Arrhenius & Wlodek Rabinowicz - 2005 - Economics and Philosophy 21 (2):177-197.
    Consider a transitive value ordering of outcomes and lotteries on outcomes, which satisfies substitutivity of equivalents and obeys “continuity for easy cases,” i.e., allows compensating risks of small losses by chances of small improvements. Temkin (2001) has argued that such an ordering must also – rather counter-intuitively – allow chances of small improvements to compensate risks of huge losses. In this paper, we show that Temkin's argument is flawed but that a better proof is possible. However, it is more difficult (...)
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  17. An Axiomatization of Choquet Expected Utility with Cominimum Independence.Takao Asano & Hiroyuki Kojima - 2015 - Theory and Decision 78 (1):117-139.
  18. Utility Reassessed: The Role of Ethics in the Practice of Design.Judy Attfield (ed.) - 1999 - Distributed Exclusively in the Usa by St. Martin's Press.
    This sparkling collection of essays both defines and reassesses the concept of Utility. Using it as a touchstone for the consideration of the place of ethics in the recent history of design, the collection offers a way into the issues which concern design decision-makers today. It offers previously unpublished research into diverse topics such as the investigation into the hitherto undiscovered designs for a utility vehicle, and it reveals a fresh perspective on the philosophy behind the concept of Utility as (...)
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  19. Choice-Based Cardinal Utility: A Tribute to Patrick Suppes.Jean Baccelli & Philippe Mongin - 2016 - Journal of Economic Methodology 23 (3):268-288.
    We reexamine some of the classic problems connected with the use of cardinal utility functions in decision theory, and discuss Patrick Suppes’ contributions to this field in light of a reinterpretation we propose for these problems. We analytically decompose the doctrine of ordinalism, which only accepts ordinal utility functions, and distinguish between several doctrines of cardinalism, depending on what components of ordinalism they specifically reject. We identify Suppes’ doctrine with the major deviation from ordinalism that conceives of utility functions as (...)
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  20. Arguments Against the Free Use of Beasts as Sexual Objects.John D. Baldari - manuscript
    In this paper, I intend to deny the morality and instrumentality of the behavior known as bestiality, or the use of non-human animals for sexual gratification by human beings. While to most modern peoples, this hardly even seems like it should be in question, it should be the nature of the human mind to occasionally question long-standing traditional moray in the hopes of finding solutions to problems and the disbanding of superstition. It has been proposed that the moral question, and (...)
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  21. Utility Optimization When the Utility Function is Virtually Unknown.Enrique Ballestero & Carlos Romero - 1994 - Theory and Decision 37 (2):233-243.
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  22. A Note on Equivalent Comparisons of Information Channels.Luís Fernando Brands Barbosa & Gil Riella - 2015 - Theory and Decision 78 (1):33-44.
    Nakata (Theory Decis 71:559–574, 2011) presents a model of acquisition of information where the agent does not know what pieces of information she is missing. In this note, we point out some technical problems in a few of Nakata’s results and show how to correct them.
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  23. Local Utility Functions.Peter Bardsley - 1993 - Theory and Decision 34 (2):109-118.
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  24. Utility, Exchange, and Commensurability.Jonathan Baron - 1988 - Journal of Thought 23:111-131.
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  25. On Ordinal Utility, Cardinal Utility and Random Utility.Richard Batley - 2008 - Theory and Decision 64 (1):37-63.
    Though the Random Utility Model (RUM) was conceived entirely in terms of ordinal utility, the apparatus through which it is widely practised exhibits properties of cardinal utility. The adoption of cardinal utility as a working operation of ordinal is perfectly valid, provided interpretations drawn from that operation remain faithful to ordinal utility. The article considers whether the latter requirement holds true for several measurements commonly derived from RUM. In particular it is found that measurements of consumer surplus change may depart (...)
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  26. Evaluating Time Streams of Income: Discounting What? [REVIEW]Manel Baucells & Rakesh K. Sarin - 2007 - Theory and Decision 63 (2):95-120.
    For decisions whose consequences accrue over time, there are several possible techniques to compute total utility. One is to discount utilities of future consequences at some appropriate rate. The second is to discount per-period certainty equivalents. And the third is to compute net present values (NPVs) of various possible streams and to then apply the utility function to these net present values. We find that the best approach is to first compute NPVs of various possible income streams and then take (...)
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  27. Welfarist Evaluations of Decision Rules Under Interstate Utility Dependencies.Claus Beisbart & Stephan Hartmann - 2010 - Social Choice and Welfare 34 (2):315-344.
    We provide welfarist evaluations of decision rules for federations of states and consider models, under which the interests of people from different states are stochastically dependent. We concentrate on two welfarist standards; they require that the expected utility for the federation be maximized or that the expected utilities for people from different states be equal. We discuss an analytic result that characterizes the decision rule with maximum expected utility, set up a class of models that display interstate dependencies and run (...)
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  28. Interpersonal Utility Comparisons.Lars Bergström - 1982 - Grazer Philosophische Studien 16:283-312.
    Utilitarianism, as well as many other political and moral doctrines, presupposes that the problem of interpersonal utility comparisons can be solved. Otto Neurath gave a comparatively early (1912) and explicit statement of this problem, and he suggested that it cannot be solved. This may still be the dominant view. It is argued that recent attempts to solve the problem (by e.g. Schick, Rescher, Harsanyi, Brandt, Jeffrey, Arrow, and Hare) are unsatisfactory, but that the oldest suggestion - i.e. the method of (...)
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  29. A Discussion of the Present State of Utility Theory.Georges Bernard - 1986 - Theory and Decision 20 (2):173-188.
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  30. On Utility Functions. The Present State.Georges Bernard - 1984 - Theory and Decision 17 (1):97-100.
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  31. Note on Two Applications of the CEVR Utility Function.Georges Bernard - 1978 - Theory and Decision 9 (2):199-203.
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  32. On Utility Functions.Georges Bernard - 1974 - Theory and Decision 5 (2):205-242.
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  33. The Axiomatic Approach to Population Ethics.Charles Blackorby, Walter Bossert & David Donaldson - 2003 - Politics, Philosophy and Economics 2 (3):342-381.
    This article examines several families of population principles in the light of a set of axioms. In addition to the critical-level utilitarian, number-sensitive critical-level utilitarian, and number-dampened utilitarian families and their generalized counterparts, we consider the restricted number-dampened family and introduce two new ones: the restricted critical-level and restricted number-dependent critical-level families. Subsets of the restricted families have non-negative critical levels, avoid the `repugnant conclusion' and satisfy the axiom priority for lives worth living, but violate an important independence condition.
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  34. Axiomatization of a Preference for Most Probable Winner.Pavlo R. Blavatskyy - 2006 - Theory and Decision 60 (1):17-33.
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  35. A Simultaneous Axiomatization of Utility and Subjective Probability.Ethan D. Bolker - 1967 - Philosophy of Science 34 (4):333-340.
    This paper contributes to the mathematical foundations of the model for utility theory developed by Richard Jeffrey in The Logic of Decision [5]. In it I discuss the relationship of Jeffrey's to classical models, state and interpret an existence theorem for numerical utilities and subjective probabilities and restate a theorem on their uniqueness.
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  36. Maximization of Originality.Miro Brada - manuscript
    The classic utility concept in economics, can't explain destructive or seemingly irrational behaviour. I introduce the principle of maximization of originality, which unites any kind of motivation. Maximization of richness / leisure according to budget (=classic utility), also maximizes originality,as the richer I am the fewer people are equally rich (the richest person is only one). Motivation to stand out can be however achieved also by doing an extreme sport, striptease, having big tattoo, etc. This enables to relate any human (...)
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  37. The Futility of Multiple Utility.Timothy J. Brennan - 1993 - Economics and Philosophy 9 (1):155.
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  38. Weighing Goods: Equality, Uncertainty and Time.John Broome - 1991 - Wiley-Blackwell.
    This study uses techniques from economics to illuminate fundamental questions in ethics, particularly in the foundations of utilitarianism. Topics considered include the nature of teleological ethics, the foundations of decision theory, the value of equality and the moral significance of a person's continuing identity through time.
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  39. Utilitarianism and Expected Utility.John Broome - 1987 - Journal of Philosophy 84 (8):405-422.
  40. Matters of Priority.Campbell Brown - 2005 - Dissertation, Australian National University
  41. Decision Theory.Lara Buchak - forthcoming - In Christopher Hitchcock & Alan Hajek (eds.), Oxford Handbook of Probability and Philosophy. Oxford University Press.
    Decision theory has at its core a set of mathematical theorems that connect rational preferences to functions with certain structural properties. The components of these theorems, as well as their bearing on questions surrounding rationality, can be interpreted in a variety of ways. Philosophy’s current interest in decision theory represents a convergence of two very different lines of thought, one concerned with the question of how one ought to act, and the other concerned with the question of what action consists (...)
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  42. Revisiting Risk and Rationality: A Reply to Pettigrew and Briggs.Lara Buchak - 2016 - Canadian Journal of Philosophy 45 (5-6):841-862.
    I have claimed that risk-weighted expected utility maximizers are rational, and that their preferences cannot be captured by expected utility theory. Richard Pettigrew and Rachael Briggs have recently challenged these claims. Both authors argue that only EU-maximizers are rational. In addition, Pettigrew argues that the preferences of REU-maximizers can indeed be captured by EU theory, and Briggs argues that REU-maximizers lose a valuable tool for simplifying their decision problems. I hold that their arguments do not succeed and that my original (...)
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  43. Risk and Tradeoffs.Lara Buchak - 2014 - Erkenntnis 79 (S6):1091-1117.
    The orthodox theory of instrumental rationality, expected utility (EU) theory, severely restricts the way in which risk-considerations can figure into a rational individual's preferences. It is argued here that this is because EU theory neglects an important component of instrumental rationality. This paper presents a more general theory of decision-making, risk-weighted expected utility (REU) theory, of which expected utility maximization is a special case. According to REU theory, the weight that each outcome gets in decision-making is not the subjective probability (...)
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  44. Risk and Rationality.Lara Buchak - 2013 - Oxford University Press.
    Lara Buchak sets out a new account of rational decision-making in the face of risk. She argues that the orthodox view is too narrow, and suggests an alternative, more permissive theory: one that allows individuals to pay attention to the worst-case or best-case scenario, and vindicates the ordinary decision-maker.
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  45. Testing the Effects of Similarity on Risky Choice: Implications for Violations of Expected Utility.David E. Buschena & David Zilberman - 1999 - Theory and Decision 46 (3):253-280.
    Our aim in this paper was to establish an empirical evaluation for similarity effects modeled by Rubinstein; Azipurua et al.; Leland; and Sileo. These tests are conducted through a sensitivity analysis of two well-known examples of expected utility (EU) independence violations. We found that subjective similarity reported by respondents was explained very well by objective measures suggested in the similarity literature. The empirical results of this analysis also show that: (1) the likelihood of selection for the riskier choice increases as (...)
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  46. Approaches to Cardinal Utility.A. Camacho - 1980 - Theory and Decision 12 (4):359-379.
  47. On Cardinal Utility.A. Camacho - 1979 - Theory and Decision 10 (1-4):131-145.
  48. Expected Utility From Additive Utility on Semigroups.Juan C. Candeal, Juan R. de Miguel & Esteban Induráin - 2002 - Theory and Decision 53 (1):87-94.
    In the present paper we study the framework of additive utility theory, obtaining new results derived from a concurrence of algebraic and topological techniques. Such techniques lean on the concept of a connected topological totally ordered semigroup. We achieve a general result concerning the existence of continuous and additive utility functions on completely preordered sets endowed with a binary operation ``+'', not necessarily being commutative or associative. In the final part of the paper we get some applications to expected utility (...)
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  49. Great Expectations. Part I: On the Customizability of Generalized Expected Utility. [REVIEW]Francis C. Chu & Joseph Y. Halpern - 2008 - Theory and Decision 64 (1):1-36.
    We propose a generalization of expected utility that we call generalized EU (GEU), where a decision maker’s beliefs are represented by plausibility measures and the decision maker’s tastes are represented by general (i.e., not necessarily real-valued) utility functions. We show that every agent, “rational” or not, can be modeled as a GEU maximizer. We then show that we can customize GEU by selectively imposing just the constraints we want. In particular, we show how each of Savage’s postulates corresponds to constraints (...)
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  50. Revealed Preference and Expected Utility.Stephen A. Clark - 2000 - Theory and Decision 49 (2):159-174.
    This essay gives necessary and sufficient conditions for recovering expected utility from choice behavior in several popular models of uncertainty. In particular, these techniques handle a finite state model; a model for which the choice space consists of probability densities and the expected utility representation requires bounded, measurable utility; and a model for which the choice space consists of Borel probability measures and the expected utility representation requires bounded, continuous utility. The key result is the identification of the continuity condition (...)
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