The selectionist account of behavior is actually a focused discussion of operant selection. To this end, the authors essentially exclude stimuli from their analysis. This exclusion is inconsistent with the importance placed on environmental interaction in their general account. Further, this exclusion limits the generality of their account by missing important sources of stimulus-elicited behavior (e.g., classical conditioning).
Beginning with de Sousa's question about how my position is related to that of "enactive" theorists, I spell out my emphasis on the unity of affective experience, and say more about my conception of the emotional "a priori." In response to Beisecker, I elaborate by way of a literary example on how a significant fact can exist without yet having 'registered' in one's emotional awareness, and on the basis of this I reject the claim that emotions constitute significance. Finally, prompted (...) by Gallegos, I elaborate on why, on my view, a valuable thing must have indeterminately many axiological qualities, and explain how a multifaceted world can ground a plurality of emotional standpoints. (shrink)
To understand the human capacity for psychological altruism, one requires a proper understanding of how people actually think and feel. This paper addresses the possible relevance of recent findings in experimental economics and neuroeconomics to the philosophical controversy over altruism and egoism. After briefly sketching and contextualizing the controversy, we survey and discuss the results of various studies on behaviourally altruistic helping and punishing behaviour, which provide stimulating clues for the debate over psychological altruism. On closer analysis, these studies prove (...) less relevant than originally expected because the data obtained admit competing interpretations – such as people seeking fairness versus people seeking revenge. However, this mitigated conclusion does not preclude the possibility of more fruitful research in the area in the future. Throughout our analysis, we provide hints for the direction of future research on the question. (shrink)
Within the context of structural theories this paper examines what health professionals say about their clinical service structures. We firstly trace various conceptual perspectives on clinical service structures, discussing multiple theoretical axes. These theories question whether clinical service structures represent either superficial or more profound changes in hospitals. We secondly explore which view is supported though a content analysis of the free text responses of 111 health professionals about their clinical service structures in a questionnaire survey in two large hospitals (...) that had implemented clinical service structures three years previously. Commentaries unfavourable toward clinical service structures were made by 47.7% of staff, favourable by 24.3%, mixed by 17.1% and non-evaluative statements were made by 10.8%. The most frequent criticisms were inefficient organisation of change, poor management, lack of cooperation between staff and failure to empower health practitioners. All professions made more negative than positive evaluations of their clinical service structures but the ratio was highest for doctors and lowest for allied health. Ranking of nurses' and allied health staffs' specific evaluations were similar but both differed significantly from doctors.' Unfavourable or negative comments predominated, and change appears more superficial and less profound than advocates of structural contributions hope. Four types of belief systems about clinical service structures are apparent. Some study participants are disposed toward the status quo; others toward restructuring; yet others are team oriented; and a final group is tribally oriented. The implication of this paper for managers is that more work is needed if clinical service structures are to realise the promise of more multi-disciplinarity and less fragmentation across professional groups. For scholars, the implication is that marrying different theoretical frames with empirical data can serve to produce fresh perspectives and perhaps new insights. (shrink)
There are three concerns regarding Rachlin's altruism model. First, proximal causal mechanisms such as those identified by cognitive neuroscientists and behavioral neuropharmacologists are not emphasized. Second, there is a lack of clear testable hypotheses. And third, extreme forms of altruism are emphasized rather than common forms. We focus on an overarching theme – proximal mechanisms of individual differences in altruism.
The model proposed by Redish et al. considers vulnerabilities within decision systems based on expectancy-value assumptions. Further understanding of processes leading to addiction can be gained by considering other inputs to decision-making, particularly affective associations with behaviors. This consideration suggests additional decision-making vulnerabilities that might explain addictive behaviors.
The covariant Klein-Gordon equation requires twice the boundary conditions of the Schrödinger equation and does not have an accepted single-particle interpretation. Instead of interpreting its solution as a probability wave determined by an initial boundary condition, this paper considers the possibility that the solutions are determined by both an initial and a final boundary condition. By constructing an invariant joint probability distribution from the size of the solution space, it is shown that the usual measurement probabilities can nearly be (...) recovered in the non-relativistic limit, provided that neither boundary constrains the energy to a precision near ℏ/t 0 (where t 0 is the time duration between the boundary conditions). Otherwise, deviations from standard quantum mechanics are predicted. (shrink)
A 4-space formulation of Dirac's equation gives results formally identical to those of the usual Klein paradox. However, some extra physical detail can be inferred, and this suggests that the most extreme case involves pair production within the potential barrier.
The regress of reasons threatens an epistemic agent’s right to claim that any beliefs are justified. In response, Peter Klein’s infinitism argues that an infinite series of supporting reasons of the right type not only is not vicious but can make for epistemic justification. In order to resist the sceptic, infinitism needs to provide reason to think that there is at least one justified belief in the world. Under an infinitist conception this involves showing that at least one belief (...) is supported by an infinite series of supporting reasons. This paper argues that showing this makes problems for the infinitist. The finite minds problem that prevents completion of an infinite series is well documented. This paper examines alternative attempts to provide evidence of infinity that the infinitist might take, whether by using a notion of justification without infinite reasons or by altering the notion of evidence. It concludes that both of these fail and consequently infinitism is unable to offer a solution to Agrippa’s trilemma. (shrink)
Cognitive Task Analysis (CTA) helps researchers understand how cognitive skills and strategies make it possible for people to act effectively and get things done. CTA can yield information people needemployers faced with personnel issues, market researchers who want to understand the thought processes of consumers, trainers and others who design instructional systems, health care professionals who want to apply lessons learned from errors and accidents, systems analysts developing user specifications, and many other professionals. CTA can show what makes the workplace (...) workand what keeps it from working as well as it might.Working Minds is a true handbook, offering a set of tools for doing CTA: methods for collecting data about cognitive processes and events, analyzing them, and communicating them effectively. It covers both the "why" and the "how" of CTA methods, providing examples, guidance, and stories from the authors' own experiences as CTA practitioners. Because effective use of CTA depends on some conceptual grounding in cognitive theory and researchon knowing what a cognitive perspective can offerthe book also offers an overview of current research on cognition.The book provides detailed guidance for planning and carrying out CTA, with chapters on capturing knowledge and capturing the way people reason. It discusses studying cognition in real-world settings and the challenges of rapidly changing technology. And it describes key issues in applying CTA findings in a variety of fields. Working Minds makes the methodology of CTA accessible and the skills involved attainable. (shrink)
I briefly sketch a notion of generic phenomenology, and what I call the wave-collapse illusion to the effect that transitions from generic to detailed phenomenology are not noticed as phenomenal changes. Change blindness and inattentional blindness can be analyzed as cases where certain things are phenomenally present, but generically so.
Benjamin Libet compared the perceived time of direct brain stimulation to the perceived time of skin stimulation. His results are among the most controversial experiments at the interface between psychology and philosophy. The new element that I bring to this discussion is a reanalysis of Libet's raw data. Libet's original data were difficult to interpret because of the manner in which they were presented in tables. Plotting the data as psychometric functions shows that the observers have great uncertainty about the (...) relative timing of events, as seen the shallow psychometric slopes. A second indication of uncertainty comes from Libet's use of three response categories, A first; B first; and A and B simultaneous. The large number of “perceptually simultaneous” responses provides a further measure of the difficulty of the judgment. There are thus a very broad range of stimulus delays in which the subject is unable to make an accurate ordering response. These points provide evidence that there is no compelling reason to invent exotic or ad hoc mechanisms to account for Libet's data since the uncertainty window is large enough to allow simple mechanism such as memory shifts. Libet argued that his data provide evidence for a backward referral in time. I argue that even though Libet's own data are weak, there are good arguments for a backward referral mechanism to help the subject make sense out of the tangled chaos of asynchronous information associated with experienced events. (shrink)
There is a definite challenge in the air regarding the pivotal notion of internal representation. This challenge is explicit in, e.g., van Gelder, 1995; Beer, 1995; Thelen & Smith, 1994; Wheeler, 1994; and elsewhere. We think it is a challenge that can be met and that (importantly) can be met by arguing from within a general framework that accepts many of the basic premises of the work (in new robotics and in dynamical systems theory) that motivates such scepticism in the (...) first place. Our strategy will be as follows. We begin (Section 1) by offering an account (an example and something close to a definition) of what we shall term Minimal Robust Representationalism (MRR). Sections 2 & 3 address some likely worries and questions about this notion. We end (Section 4) by making explicit the conditions under which, on our account, a science (e.g., robot- ics) may claim to be addressing cognitive phenomena. (shrink)
The emulation theory of representation is developed and explored as a framework that can revealingly synthesize a wide variety of representational functions of the brain. The framework is based on constructs from control theory (forward models) and signal processing (Kalman filters). The idea is that in addition to simply engaging with the body and environment, the brain constructs neural circuits that act as models of the body and environment. During overt sensorimotor engagement, these models are driven by efference copies in (...) parallel with the body and environment, in order to provide expectations of the sensory feedback, and to enhance and process sensory information. These models can also be run off-line in order to produce imagery, estimate outcomes of different actions, and evaluate and develop motor plans. The framework is initially developed within the context of motor control, where it has been shown that inner models running in parallel with the body can reduce the effects of feedback delay problems. The same mechanisms can account for motor imagery as the off-line driving of the emulator via efference copies. The framework is extended to account for visual imagery as the off-line driving of an emulator of the motor-visual loop. I also show how such systems can provide for amodal spatial imagery. Perception, including visual perception, results from such models being used to form expectations of, and to interpret, sensory input. I close by briefly outlining other cognitive functions that might also be synthesized within this framework, including reasoning, theory of mind phenomena, and language. Key Words: efference copies; emulation theory of representation; forward models; Kalman filters; motor control; motor imagery; perception; visual imagery. (shrink)
This is my response to the criticisms of Gregg Caruso, David Cummiskey, and Karin Meyers, in their roles as members of the “Author Meets Critics” panel devoted to my book, Buddhism, Meditation, and Free Will: A Theory of Mental Freedom at the 2019 annual meeting of the Eastern Division of the American Philosophical Association, organized by Christian Coseru. Caruso's main objection is that I am not sufficiently attentive to details of opposing arguments in Western philosophy, and Cummiskey's and Meyers’ objections, (...) similarly, are that I am insufficiently attentive to details of Buddhism. I argue that all such objections, however putatively correct, do not rise to the level of objections that actually undermine my account of mental freedom. (shrink)
In evolutionary medicine, researchers characterize some outcomes as evolutionary mismatch. Mismatch problems arise as the result of organisms living in environments to which they are poorly adapted, typically as the result of some rapid environmental change. Depression, anxiety, obesity, myopia, insomnia, breast cancer, dental problems, and numerous other negative health outcomes have all been characterized as mismatch problems. The exact nature of evolutionary mismatch itself is unclear, however. This leads to a lack of clarity about the sorts of problems that (...) evolutionary mismatch can actually explain. Resolving this challenge is important not only for the evolutionary health literature, but also because the notion of evolutionary mismatch involves central concepts in evolutionary biology: fitness, evolution in changing environments, and so forth. In this paper, I examine two characterizations of mismatch currently in the literature. I propose that we conceptualize mismatch as a relation between an optimal environment and an actual environment. Given an organism and its particular physiology, the optimal environment is the environment in which the organism’s fitness is maximized: in other words, the optimal environment is that in which the organism’s fitness is as high as it can possibly be. The actual environment is the environment in which the organism actually finds itself. To the extent that there is a discordance between the organism’s actual and optimal environments, there is an evolutionary mismatch. In the paper, I show that this account of mismatch gives us the right result when other accounts fail, and provides useful targets for investigation. (shrink)
William James’ Principles of Psychology, in which he made famous the ‘specious present’ doctrine of temporal experience, and Edmund Husserl’s Zur Phänomenologie des inneren Zeitbewusstseins, were giant strides in the philosophical investigation of the temporality of experience. However, an important set of precursors to these works has not been adequately investigated. In this article, we undertake this investigation. Beginning with Reid’s essay ‘Memory’ in Essays on the Intellectual Powers of Man, we trace out a line of development of ideas about (...) the temporality of experience that runs through Dugald Stewart, Thomas Brown, William Hamilton, and finally the work of Shadworth Hodgson and Robert Kelly, both of whom were immediate influences on James (though James pseudonymously cites the latter as ‘E.R. Clay’). Furthermore, we argue that Hodgson, especially his Metaphysic of Experience (1898), was a significant influence on Husserl. (shrink)
Numerous philosophical theories of joint agency and its intentional structure have been developed in the past few decades. These theories have offered accounts of joint agency that appeal to higher-level states that are?shared? in some way. These accounts have enhanced our understanding of joint agency, yet there are a number of lower-level cognitive phenomena involved in joint action that philosophers rarely acknowledge. In particular, empirical research in cognitive science has revealed that when individuals engage in a joint activity such as (...) conversation or joint problem solving, they become aligned at multiple levels. We argue that this phenomenon of alignment is crucial to understanding joint actions and should be integrated with philosophical approaches. In this paper, we sketch a possible integration, and draw out its implications for understanding of joint agency and collective intentionality. The result is a process-based, dynamic account of joint action that integrates both low-level and high-level states, and seeks to capture the separate processes of how a joint action is initiated and sustained. (shrink)
In the following comments, I will raise no major objection to Furtak’s main line of argument. My questions are essentially requests for clarification. They focus on three key expressions: first, the “unified” character of emotional agitation and intentionality; second, the unique “mode of cognition” claimed for emotions; and third, the “emotional a priori.”.
Corporate philanthropy describes the action when a corporation voluntarily donates a portion of its resources to a societal cause. Although the thought of philanthropy invokes feelings of altruism, there are many objectives for corporate giving beyond altruism. Meeting strategic corporate objectives can be an important if not primary goal of philanthropy. The purpose of this paper is to share insights from a strategic corporate philanthropic initiative aimed at increasing the pool of frontline customer contact employees who are performance-ready, while supporting (...) curriculum development and infrastructure improvement for selected university business programs, creating a win-win situation for the company and the universities. This paper will address three objectives. First, we will examine the evolution of strategic philanthropy from the traditional view to its current position as a strategic option. Second, we will address the recruitment of front line talent needs (customer facing jobs in sales, customer service, and marketing) based on the profit maximization model of strategic philanthropy. Finally, we will offer conclusions and issues for future research. (shrink)
I argue for a possible Buddhist theory of free will that combines Frankfurt's hierarchical analysis of meta-volitional/volitional accord with elements of the Buddhist eightfold path that prescribe that Buddhist aspirants cultivate meta-volitional wills that promote the mental freedom that culminates in enlightenment, as well as a causal/functional analysis of how Buddhist meditative methodology not only plausibly makes that possible, but in ways that may be applied to undermine Galen Strawson's impossibility argument, along with most of the other major arguments for (...) free will skepticism. (shrink)
The classical tradition of testimony in topics -- Three medieval traditions : Augustine, Boethius, and Cassiodoras -- Two renaissance traditions : Ciceronian and Augustinian -- The long influence of the port-royal logic -- Appreciating Aristotle : Thomists, Scots, and Oxford noetics -- Testimony becomes experience : the rise of critical thinking.
Felix Klein and Abraham Fraenkel each formulated a criterion for a theory of infinitesimals to be successful, in terms of the feasibility of implementation of the Mean Value Theorem. We explore the evolution of the idea over the past century, and the role of Abraham Robinson's framework therein.
This study investigates the relations between narrative experiences and film enjoyment, and explores the possibility that transportability and perceived realism facilitate narrative experience and indirectly influence enjoyment. The study measured narrative experience and realism in three films from different genres. Results demonstrate that transportability, and both external realism and narrative realism positively influence at least one aspect of narrative experience, and that narrative experience in turn is a significant predictor for enjoyment.
Abstract In his discourses on ‘the lily of the field and the bird of the air,’ Kierkegaard presents faith as the best possible response to our precarious and uncertain condition, and as the ideal way to cope with the insecurities and concerns that his readers will recognize as common features of human existence. Reading these discourses together, we are introduced to the portrait of a potential believer who, like the ‘divinely appointed teachers’—the lily and the bird—succeeds in leading a life (...) that is full of care, but free of worry. Such a portrait, we claim, echoes Kierkegaard’s portrait of the knight of faith in Fear and Trembling . In this essay we suggest that faith, as characterized in the ‘lily and bird’ discourses, is a kind of existential trust that would allow us to overcome worry, while remaining wholeheartedly engaged in the finite realm of our cares and concerns. We claim that Kierkegaard’s goal in these discourses is not to belittle our earthly cares, but to invite us to develop a modified attitude toward all that we are susceptible to worry about. Content Type Journal Article Category Article Pages 1-19 DOI 10.1007/s11153-011-9322-5 Authors Sharon Krishek, Department of Philosophy, The Hebrew University of Jerusalem, Jerusalem, Israel Rick Anthony Furtak, Department of Philosophy, Colorado College, Colorado Springs, CO, USA Journal International Journal for Philosophy of Religion Online ISSN 1572-8684 Print ISSN 0020-7047. (shrink)
It is the aim of work in theoretical cognitive science to produce good theories of what exactly cognition amounts to, preferably theories which not only provide a framework for fruitful empirical investigation, but which also shed light on cognitive activity itself, which help us to understand our place, as cognitive agents, in a complex causally determined physical universe. The most recent such framework to gain significant fame is the so-called dynamical approach to cognition. Explaining and exploring DST is the purpose (...) of the collection Mind as Motion: Explorations in the Dynamics of Cognition, edited by Robert Port and Timothy van Gelder. (shrink)