We present a discrete model theory similar in structure to ordinary quantum mechanics, but based on a finite field instead of complex amplitudes. The interpretation of this theory involves only the “modal” concepts of possibility and necessity rather than quantitative probability measures. Despite its simplicity, our model theory includes entangled states and has versions of both Bell’s theorem and the no cloning theorem.
From the structure of quantum dynamics for closed and open systems, we describe several general results about information flow between interacting systems, which can be expressed in diagrammatic form. Conditions on information flow (e.g., that no information is transferred from system A to system B) imply that the overall dynamical evolution has a particular structure. We also remark that one simple type of two-qubit interaction, the unitary CNOT gate, cannot be represented by local operations and a single simultaneous information exchange.
This is a critical examination of the astonishing progress made in the philosophical study of the properties of the natural numbers from the 1880s to the 1930s. Reassessing the brilliant innovations of Frege, Russell, Wittgenstein, and others, which transformed philosophy as well as our understanding of mathematics, Michael Potter places arithmetic at the interface between experience, language, thought, and the world.
Michael Potter presents a comprehensive new philosophical introduction to set theory. Anyone wishing to work on the logical foundations of mathematics must understand set theory, which lies at its heart. Potter offers a thorough account of cardinal and ordinal arithmetic, and the various axiom candidates. He discusses in detail the project of set-theoretic reduction, which aims to interpret the rest of mathematics in terms of set theory. The key question here is how to deal with the paradoxes that bedevil (...) set theory. Potter offers a strikingly simple version of the most widely accepted response to the paradoxes, which classifies sets by means of a hierarchy of levels. What makes the book unique is that it interweaves a careful presentation of the technical material with a penetrating philosophical critique. Potter does not merely expound the theory dogmatically but at every stage discusses in detail the reasons that can be offered for believing it to be true. Set Theory and its Philosophy is a key text for philosophy, mathematical logic, and computer science. (shrink)
This paper examines the relationship between perceiving and imagining on the basis of predictive processing models in neuroscience. Contrary to the received view in philosophy of mind, which holds that perceiving and imagining are essentially distinct, these models depict perceiving and imagining as deeply unified and overlapping. It is argued that there are two mutually exclusive implications of taking perception and imagination to be fundamentally unified. The view defended is what I dub the ecological–enactive view given that it does not (...) succumb to internalism about the mind-world relation, and allows one to keep a version of the received view in play. (shrink)
In recent years, we have seen a new concern with ethics training for research and development professionals. Although ethics training has become more common, the effectiveness of the training being provided is open to question. In the present effort, a new ethics training course was developed that stresses the importance of the strategies people apply to make sense of ethical problems. The effectiveness of this training was assessed in a sample of 59 doctoral students working in the biological and social (...) sciences using a pre-post design with follow-up and a series of ethical decision-making measures serving as the outcome variable. Results showed not only that this training led to sizable gains in ethical decision making but also that these gains were maintained over time. The implications of these findings for ethics training in the sciences are discussed. (shrink)
We develop a truism of commonsense psychology that perception and action constitute the boundaries of the mind. We do so however not on the basis of commonsense psychology, but by using the notion of a Markov blanket originally employed to describe the topological properties of causal networks. We employ the Markov blanket formalism to propose precise criteria for demarcating the boundaries of the mind that unlike other rival candidates for “marks of the cognitive” avoids begging the question in the extended (...) mind debate. Our criteria imply that the boundary of the mind is nested and multiscale sometimes extending beyond the individual agent to incorporate items located in the environment. Chalmers has used commonsense psychology to develop what he sees as the most serious challenge to the view that minds sometimes extend into the world. He has argued that perception and action should be thought of as interfaces that separate minds from their surrounding environment. In a series of recent papers Hohwy has defended a similar claim using the Markov blanket formalism. We use the Markov blanket formalism to show how both of their objections to the extended mind fail. (shrink)
In Epistemic Injustice Miranda Fricker argues that there is a distinctively epistemic type of injustice in which someone is wronged specifically in his or her capacity as a knower. Fricker's examples of identity-prejudicial credibility deficit primarily involve gender, race, and class, in which individuals are given less credibility due to prejudicial stereotypes. We argue that children, as a class, are also subject to testimonial injustice and receive less epistemic credibility than they deserve. To illustrate the prevalence of testimonial injustice against (...) children we document examples of negative prejudicial treatment in forensic contexts where children frequently act as testifiers. These examples, along with research on the child's competence and reliability as a testifier, reveal widespread epistemic prejudice against children. Given that subjection to prejudice can have a detrimental impact on children we discuss ways to ameliorate this form of testimonial injustice. We argue that, both in formal and natural contexts, the child's testimony should be evaluated alongside the relationships that support her development as a testifier. The adult can play a central role in creating successful testimonial interactions with children by acting as a. (shrink)
Ethical decision making measures are widely applied as the principal dependent variable used in studies of research integrity. However, evidence bearing on the internal and external validity of these measures is not available. In this study, ethical decision making measures were administered to 102 graduate students in the biological, health, and social sciences, along with measures examining exposure to ethical breaches and the severity of punishments recommended. The ethical decision making measure was found to be related to exposure to ethical (...) events and the severity of punishments awarded. The implications of these findings for the application of ethical decision making measures are discussed. (shrink)
This study examined the role of key causal analysis strategies in forecasting and ethical decision-making. Undergraduate participants took on the role of the key actor in several ethical problems and were asked to identify and analyze the causes, forecast potential outcomes, and make a decision about each problem. Time pressure and analytic mindset were manipulated while participants worked through these problems. The results indicated that forecast quality was associated with decision ethicality, and the identification of the critical causes of the (...) problem was associated with both higher quality forecasts and higher ethicality of decisions. Neither time pressure nor analytic mindset impacted forecasts or ethicality of decisions. Theoretical and practical implications of these findings are discussed. (shrink)
It is commonly held that early career experiences influence ethical behavior. One way early career experiences might operate is to influence the decisions people make when presented with problems that raise ethical concerns. To test this proposition, 102 first-year doctoral students were asked to complete a series of measures examining ethical decision making along with a series of measures examining environmental experiences and climate perceptions. Factoring of the environmental measure yielded five dimensions: professional leadership, poor coping, lack of rewards, limited (...) competitive pressure, and poor career direction. Factoring of the climate inventory yielded four dimensions: equity, interpersonal conflict, occupational engagement, and work commitment. When these dimensions were used to predict performance on the ethical decision-making task, it was found that the environmental dimensions were better predictors than the climate dimensions. The implications of these findings for research on ethical conduct are discussed. (shrink)
Radical enactive and embodied approaches to cognitive science oppose the received view in the sciences of the mind in denying that cognition fundamentally involves contentful mental representation. This paper argues that the fate of representationalism in cognitive science matters significantly to how best to understand the extent of cognition. It seeks to establish that any move away from representationalism toward pure, empirical functionalism fails to provide a substantive “mark of the cognitive” and is bereft of other adequate means for individuating (...) cognitive activity. It also argues that giving proper attention to the way the folk use their psychological concepts requires questioning the legitimacy of commonsense functionalism. In place of extended functionalism—empirical or commonsensical—we promote the fortunes of extensive enactivism, clarifying in which ways it is distinct from notions of extended mind and distributed cognition. (shrink)
Although education in the responsible conduct of research is considered necessary, evidence bearing on the effectiveness of these programs in improving research ethics has indicated that, although some programs are successful, many fail. Accordingly, there is a need for systematic evaluation of ethics education programs. In the present effort, we examine procedures for evaluation of ethics education programs from a multilevel perspective: examining both within-program evaluation and cross-program evaluation. With regard to within-program evaluation, we note requisite designs and measures for (...) conducting systematic program evaluation have been developed and multiple measures should be applied in program evaluation. With regard to cross-program evaluation, we argue that a meta-analytic framework should be employed where analyses are used to identify best practices in ethics education. The implications of this multilevel approach for improving responsible conduct of research educational programs are discussed. (shrink)
We apply a cognitive modeling approach to the problem of measuring expertise on rank ordering problems. In these problems, people must order a set of items in terms of a given criterion (e.g., ordering American holidays through the calendar year). Using a cognitive model of behavior on this problem that allows for individual differences in knowledge, we are able to infer people's expertise directly from the rankings they provide. We show that our model-based measure of expertise outperforms self-report measures, taken (...) both before and after completing the ordering of items, in terms of correlation with the actual accuracy of the answers. These results apply to six general knowledge tasks, like ordering American holidays, and two prediction tasks, involving sporting and television competitions. Based on these results, we discuss the potential and limitations of using cognitive models in assessing expertise. (shrink)
John McDowell rejects the idea that non-conceptual content can rationally justify empirical claims—a task for which it is ill-fitted by its non-conceptual nature. This paper considers three possible objections to his views: he cannot distinguish empty conception from the perceptual experience of an object; perceptual discrimination outstrips the capacity of concepts to keep pace; and experience of the empirical world is more extensive than the conceptual focusing within it. While endorsing McDowell’s rejection of what he means by non-conceptual content, and (...) appreciating his insight into the experiential synthesis of intuition and conception (in particular, its role in grasping objects), I will argue that Edmund Husserl presents an even more comprehensive account of perceptual experience that explains how we experience the contribution of receptivity and sensibility and how they cooperate in perceptual discrimination. Further, it reveals “horizons”—a unique kind of contents, surplus content (rather than independent non-conceptual content)—beyond the synthesis of intuitive and conceptual contents through which objects are grasped. Such horizons play a constitutive role, making experience with its conceptual dimensions and justificatory potential possible; they in no way function like a bare given that is to fulfill some independent justificatory role. Whereas McDowell focuses on how experience does not take place in isolation from the exercise of conceptual capacities, Husserl complements his view by situating experience in a more encompassing whole and by elucidating the surplus-horizons that exceed the conceptual content of experience; play an inseparable, constitutive role within it; and indicate the limits of conceptual comprehension. (shrink)
In this paper I engage interdisciplinary conversation on inaction as the dominant response to climate change, and develop an analysis of the specific phenomenon of complacency through a critical-feminist lens. I suggest that Chris Cuomo's discussion of the “insufficiency” problem and Susan Sherwin's call for a “public ethics” jointly point toward particularly promising harm-reduction strategies. I draw upon and extend their work by arguing that extant philosophical accounts of complacency are inadequate to the task of sorting out what it means (...) to be complacent on climate change. I offer a sketch for an alternative account, which I take to be a start in the direction of mapping out a diverse array of “motivational vices” that need to be named, grappled with, and remedied. (shrink)
At some point in America in the 1940s, T. D. Lysenko's neo-Lamarckian hereditary theories transformed from a set of disputed doctrines into a prime exemplar of "pseudoscience." This paper explores the context in which this theory acquired this pejorative status by examining American efforts to refute Lysenkoism both before and after the famous August 1948 endorsement of Lysenko's doctrines by the Stalinist state, with particular attention to the translation efforts of Theodosius Dobzhansky. After enumerating numerous tactics for combating perceived pseudoscience, (...) the Lysenko case is then juxtaposed with another American case of alleged pseudoscience: the notorious 1950 scandal surrounding Immanuel Velikovsky's Worlds in Collision (1950, Worlds in Collision. New York: Macmillan). On several levels, the characterization of Lysenkoism as pseudoscientific served as a template for casting other rejected theories, including Velikovsky's, in the same light. (shrink)
The practice of Emergency Management in Michigan raises anew the question of whose knowledge matters to whom and for what reasons, against the background of what projects, challenges, and systemic imperatives. In this paper, I offer a historical overview of state intervention laws across the United States, focusing specifically on Michigan’s Emergency Manager laws. I draw on recent analyses of these laws to develop an account of a phenomenon that I call epistemic redlining, which, I suggest, is a form of (...) group-based credibility discounting not readily countenanced by existing, ‘culprit-based’ accounts of epistemic injustice. I argue that epistemic redlining plays a crucial role in ongoing projects of racialized subordination and dispossession in Michigan, and that such discounting tends to have structural causes that can be difficult to identify and uproot. Contrary to the general thrust of recent work on the topic, I argue that epistemic redlining ought to be understood as a form of epistemic injustice. (shrink)
Virtue ethics has a rich history; yet, its application in health ethics has been minimal compared to other major ethical frameworks. Even more, its application to health policy and population-level questions has been almost nonexistent. A new concept in moral theology, structures of virtue, provides impetus for ethicists to consider how virtue ethics can be a valuable addition to existing frameworks in public health ethics. This article offers a basic overview of virtue ethics and its value for analysis of social (...) structures in public health. It does so by explaining how virtue can be seen not only in the process of public health—the promotion of habituated behavior—but also in the content of public health—values such as temperance, fortitude and prudence. It concludes with two extended applications of virtue ethics: vaccination policy and healthy eating. (shrink)