This paper argues for two theses: that degrees of belief are context sensitive; that outright belief is belief to degree 1. The latter thesis is rejected quickly in most discussions of the relationship between credence and belief, but the former thesis undermines the usual reasons for doing so. Furthermore, identifying belief with credence 1 allows nice solutions to a number of problems for the most widely-held view of the relationship between credence and belief, the threshold view. I provide a (...) sketch of a formal framework on which both theses are true. This is a modified Bayesian framework; I argue that despite making credences context-sensitive, the framework lets Bayesians hold on to their signature explanatory successes. The sort of context-sensitivity claimed for credences here mirrors the sort of context-sensitivity I have elsewhere claimed for outright belief: one's credences depend, in part, on the space of alternative possibilities one takes seriously in a context. (shrink)
Kaplan (1989) famously claimed that monsters--operators that shift the context--do not exist in English and "could not be added to it". Several recent theorists have pointed out a range of data that seem to refute Kaplan's claim, but others (most explicitly Stalnaker 2014) have offered a principled argument that monsters are impossible. This paper interprets and resolves the dispute. Contra appearances, this is no dry, technical matter: it cuts to the heart of a deep disagreement about the fundamental structure (...) of a semantic theory. We argue that: (i) the interesting notion of a monster is not an operator that shifts some formal parameter, but rather an operator that shifts parameters that play a certain theoretical role; (ii) one cannot determine whether a given semantic theory allows monsters simply by looking at the formal semantics; (iii) theories which forbid shifting the formal "context" parameter are perfectly compatible with the existence of monsters (in the interesting sense). We explain and defend these claims by contrasting two kinds of semantic theory--Kaplan's (1989) and Lewis's (1980). (shrink)
Temporal reference in natural language is inherently context dependent: what counts as a moment in one context may be structurally analysed in another context, and vice versa. In this note we outline a way of accounting for this phenomenon within event-based semantics.
This paper revisits some foundational questions concerning the abstract representation of a discourse context. The context of a conversation is represented by a body of information that is presumed to be shared by the participants in the conversation – the information that the speaker presupposes a point at which a speech act is interpreted. This notion is designed to represent both the information on which context-dependent speech acts depend, and the situation that speech acts are designed to (...) affect, and so to be a representation of context that is appropriate for explaining the interaction of context and the contents expressed in them. After reviewing the motivating ideas and the outlines of the apparatus, the paper responds to a criticism of the framework, and considers the way it can help to clarify some phenomena concerning pronouns with indefinite antecedents. (shrink)
One aim of this essay is to contribute to understanding aesthetic communication—the process by which agents aim to convey thoughts and transmit knowledge about aesthetic matters to others. Our focus will be on the use of aesthetic adjectives in aesthetic communication. Although theorists working on the semantics of adjectives have developed sophisticated theories about gradable adjectives, they have tended to avoid studying aesthetic adjectives—the class of adjectives that play a central role in expressing aesthetic evaluations. And despite the wealth of (...) attention paid to aesthetic adjectives by philosophical aestheticians, they have paid little attention to contemporary linguistic theories of adjectives. We take our work to be a first step in remedying these lacunae. In this paper, we present four experiments that examine one aspect of how aesthetic adjectives ordinarily function: the context-sensitivity of their application standards. Our results present a prima facie empirical challenge to a common distinction between relative and absolute gradable adjectives because aesthetic adjectives are found to behave differently from both. Our results thus also constitute a prima facie vindication of some philosophical aestheticians’ contention that aesthetic adjectives constitute a particularly interesting segment of natural language, even if the boundaries of this segment might turn out to be different from what they had in mind. (shrink)
The purpose of this study was to assess the relationships among ethical context, organizational commitment, and person-organization fit using a sample of 304 young working adults. Results indicated that corporate ethical values signifying different cultural aspects of an ethical context were positively related to both organizational commitment and person-organization fit. Organizational commitment was also positively related to person-organization fit. The findings suggest that the development and promotion of an ethical context might enhance employees' workplace experiences, and companies (...) should consider adopting ethical policies that support principled conduct, punish unethical actions, and increase individual perceptions of an ethical company environment. (shrink)
In Study 1, we test a theoretical model involving temptation, monetary intelligence (MI), a mediator, and unethical intentions and investigate the direct and indirect paths simultaneously based on multiple-wave panel data collected in open classrooms from 492 American and 256 Chinese students. For the whole sample, temptation is related to low unethical intentions indirectly. Multi-group analyses reveal that temptation predicts unethical intentions both indirectly and directly for male American students only; but not for female American students. For Chinese students, both (...) paths are non-significant. Love of money contributes significantly to MI for all students. In Study 2, using money as a temptation and giving them opportunities to cheat on a matrix task, most Chinese students (78.4 %) do not cheat in open classrooms; supporting survey and structural equation modeling (SEM) results in Study 1. However, students in private cubicles cheat significantly more (53.4 %) than those in open classrooms (21.6 %). Finally, students’ love of money attitude predicts cheating. Factor rich predicts the cheating amount, whereas factor motivator predicts the cheating percentage. Our results shed new light on the impact of temptation and love of money as dispositional traits, money as a temptation, and environmental context (public vs. private) on unethical intentions and cheating behaviors. (shrink)
In this paper, we address the issue of privacy protection in context aware services, through the use of entropy as a means of measuring the capability of locating a user’s whereabouts and identifying personal selections. We present a framework for calculating levels of abstraction in location and personal preferences reporting in queries to a context aware services server. Finally, we propose a methodology for determining the levels of abstraction in location and preferences that should be applied in user (...) data reporting during service provision, according to her personal privacy settings. (shrink)
Previous research indicates that ethical ideologies, issue-contingencies, and social context can impact ethical reasoning in different business situations. However, the manner in which these constructs work together to shape different steps of the ethical decision-making process is not always clear. The purpose of this study was to address these issues by exploring the influence of idealism and relativism, perceived moral intensity in a decision-making situation, and social context on the recognition of an ethical issue and ethical intention. Utilizing (...) a sales-based scenario and multiple ethics measures included on a self-report questionnaire, data were collected from a regional sample of business students, most of whom had modest work experience. The results indicated that perceived moral intensity was associated with increased ethical issue recognition and ethical intention. Idealism was also associated with increased ethical issue recognition, and relativism was associated with decreased ethical intention. Social consensus was positively related to ethical issue recognition and intention, while competitive context was inversely related to ethical intention. Finally, ethical issue recognition was associated with increased ethical intention. Idealism, moral intensity, social consensus, and work experience worked together as predictors of ethical issue recognition, whereas recognition of an ethical issue, relativism, moral intensity, social consensus, and competitive context worked together to predict ethical intention. (shrink)
Since Zygon: Journal of Religion and Science was founded 49 years ago and since one of its co-publishers, the Institute on Religion in an Age of Science (IRAS), was founded 60 years ago, there have been significant developments in their various cultural contexts—in science, in religion, in culture, in academia, and in the science and religion dialogue. This article is a personal remembrance and reflection that compares the context of IRAS in 1954 when it was first organized with the (...)context of IRAS and Zygon today. It considers the contemporary niche of IRAS in relation to the developments that have occurred over the past 60 years. (shrink)
The Ramseyan thesis that the probability of an indicative conditional is equal to the corresponding conditional probability of its consequent given its antecedent is both widely confirmed and subject to attested counterexamples (e.g., McGee 2000, Kaufmann 2004). This raises several puzzling questions. For instance, why are there interpretations of conditionals that violate this Ramseyan thesis in certain contexts, and why are they otherwise very rare? In this paper, I raise some challenges to Stefan Kaufmann's account of why the Ramseyan thesis (...) sometimes fails, and motivate my own theory. On my theory, the proposition expressed by an indicative conditional is partially determined by a background partition, and hence its probability depends on the choice of such a partition. I hold that this background partition is contextually determined, and in certain conditions is set by a salient question under discussion in the context. I show how the resulting theory offers compelling answers to the puzzling questions raised by failures of the Ramseyan thesis. (shrink)
According to grounded cognition, words whose semantics contain sensory-motor features activate sensory-motor simulations, which, in turn, interact with spatial responses to produce grounded congruency effects. Growing evidence shows these congruency effects do not always occur, suggesting instead that the grounded features in a word's meaning do not become active automatically across contexts. Researchers sometimes use this as evidence that concepts are not grounded, further concluding that grounded information is peripheral to the amodal cores of concepts. We first review broad evidence (...) that words do not have conceptual cores, and that even the most salient features in a word's meaning are not activated automatically. Then, in three experiments, we provide further evidence that grounded congruency effects rely dynamically on context, with the central grounded features in a concept becoming active only when the current context makes them salient. Even when grounded features are central to a word's meaning, their activation depends on task conditions. (shrink)
This paper compares the moral reasoning of 363 auditors from Canada and the United States. We investigate whether national institutional context is associated with differences in auditors'' moral reasoning by examining three components of auditors'' moral decision process: (1) moral development, which describes cognitive moral capability, (2) prescriptive reasoning of how a realistic accounting dilemma ought to be resolved and, (3) deliberative reasoning of how a realistic accounting dilemma will be resolved. Not surprisingly, it appears that institutional factors are (...) more likely to be associated with auditors'' deliberative reasoning than their prescriptive reasoning in both countries. Additionally, our findings suggest that the national institutional context found in the United States, which has a tougher regulatory and more litigious environment, appears to better encourage auditors to deliberate according to what they perceive is "the ideal" judgment as compared to the Canadian context. We then discuss the implications of these findings for regulators and for ethics research. (shrink)
In this article, I outline a framework for the sociological study of culture that connects three intertwined elements of human culture and demonstrates the concrete contexts under which each most critically influences actions and their subsequent outcomes. In contrast to models that cast motivations, resources, and meanings as competing explanations of how culture affects action, I argue that these are fundamental constituent elements of culture that are inseparable, interdependent, and simultaneously operative. Which element provides the strongest link to action, and (...) how this link operates, must be understood as a function of the actor's position within wider social contexts. I argue that on average motivations have the most discernable link to action within a social strata, cultural resources provide the strongest link across strata, and meanings have the greatest direct influence when codified and sanctioned. I then offer a reframing and synthesis that reintegrates previously “competing” theories of culture into a more holistic context-dependent model of culture in action. Finally, I use evidence from prior empirical research, as well as new data from an ongoing ethnographic study of health behaviors among the aged, to show how various elements of culture are concretely linked to action in eight different social contexts. In doing so, I provide a roadmap for the transition out of the “either-or” logic underlying much of cultural theory and reemphasize the importance of the classical sociological concern for “when” and “how” various aspects of culture influence action and outcomes in concrete social contexts. (shrink)
Some apparently valid arguments crucially rely on context change. To take a kind of example first discussed by Frege, ‘Tomorrow, it’ll be sunny’ taken on a day seems to entail ‘Today, it’s sunny’ taken on the next day, but the first sentence taken on a day sadly does not seem to entail the second sentence taken on the second next day. Mid-argument context change has not been accounted for by the tradition that has extensively studied the distinctive logical (...) properties of context-dependent languages, for that tradition has focussed on arguments whose premises and conclusions are taken at the same context. I first argue for the desiderability of having a logic that accounts for mid-argument context change and I explain how one can informally understand such context change in a standard framework in which the relation of logical consequence holds among sentences. I then propose a family of simple temporal “intercontextual” logics that adequately model the validity of certain arguments in which the context changes. In particular, such logics validate the apparently valid argument in the Fregean example. The logics lack many traditional structural properties (reflexivity, contraction, commutativity etc.) as a consequence of the logical significance acquired by the sequence structure of premises and conclusions. The logics are however strong enough to capture in the form of logical truths all the valid arguments of both classical logic and Kaplan-style “intracontextual” logic. Finally, I extend the framework by introducing new operations into the object language, such as intercontextual conjunction, disjunction and implication, which, contrary to intracontextual conjunction, disjunction and implication, perfectly match the metalinguistic, intercontextual notions of premise combination, conclusion combination and logical consequence by representing their respective two operands as taken at different contexts. (shrink)
We introduce a “reason-based” framework for explaining and predicting individual choices. It captures the idea that a decision-maker focuses on some but not all properties of the options and chooses an option whose motivationally salient properties he/she most prefers. Reason-based explanations allow us to distinguish between two kinds of context-dependent choice: the motivationally salient properties may (i) vary across choice contexts, and (ii) include not only “intrinsic” properties of the options, but also “context-related” properties. Our framework can accommodate (...) boundedly rational and sophisticatedly rational choice. Since properties can be recombined in new ways, it also offers resources for predicting choices in unobserved contexts. (shrink)
The interplay of content and context is observable in a moment to moment manner as propositional content unfolds. The current contribution illustrates this through data from real-time language comprehension indicating that propositional content is not computed in isolation but relies in important ways on context during every step of the computation of meaning. The relevant notion of context that we have to adopt includes all aspects of possible worlds and draws on a variety of knowledge representations, which (...) in a first processing phase serve to generate expectations for upcoming words. In a second phase, the discourse representation is assessed and if necessary updated by means of inferential reasoning and enrichment to reflect the speaker’s intended meaning. (shrink)
Keith DeRose has argued that context shifting experiments should be designed in a specific way in order to accommodate what he calls a ‘truth/falsity asymmetry’. I explain and critique DeRose's reasons for proposing this modification to contextualist methodology, drawing on recent experimental studies of DeRose's bank cases as well as experimental findings about the verification of affirmative and negative statements. While DeRose's arguments for his particular modification to contextualist methodology fail, the lesson of his proposal is that there is (...) good reason to pay close attention to several subtle aspects of the design of context shifting experiments. (shrink)
Linguistic expressions frequently make reference to the situation in which they are uttered. In fact, there are expressions whose whole point of use is to relate to their context of utterance. It is such expressions that this article is primarily about. However, rather than presenting the richness of pertinent phenomena (cf. Anderson & Keenan 1985), it concentrates on the theoretical tools provided by the (standard) two-dimensional analysis of context dependence, essentially originating with Kaplan (1989)--with a little help from (...) Stalnaker (1978) and Lewis (1979a, 1980), and various predecessors including Kamp (1971) and Vlach (1973). The current article overlaps in content with the account in Zimmermann (1991), which is however much broader (and at times deeper). . (shrink)
This paper considers a now familiar argument that the ubiquity of context -dependence threatens the project of natural language semantics, at least as that project has usually been conceived: as concerning itself with `what is said' by an utterance of a given sentence. I argue in response that the `anti-semantic' argument equivocates at a crucial point and, therefore, that we need not choose between semantic minimalism, truth-conditional pragmatism, and the like. Rather, we must abandon the idea, familiar from Kaplan (...) and others, that utterances express propositions `relative to contexts' and replace it with the Strawonian idea that speakers express propositions by making utterances in contexts. The argument for this claim consists in a detailed investigation of the particular case of demonstratives, which I argue demand such a Strawsonian treatment. I then respond to several objections, the most important of which allege that the Strawsonian account somehow undermines the project of natural language semantics, or threatens the semantics -pragmatics distinction. Please note that the paper posted here is an extended version of what was published. (shrink)
Abstract -/- Inclusive nonindexical context-dependence occurs when the preferred interpretation of an utterance implies its lexically-derived meaning. It is argued that the corresponding processes of free or lexically mandated enrichment can be modeled as abductive inference. A form of abduction is implemented in Simple Type Theory on the basis of a notion of plausibility, which is in turn regarded a preference relation over possible worlds. Since a preordering of doxastic alternatives taken for itself only amounts to a relatively vacuous (...) ad hoc model, it needs to be combined with a rational way of learning from new evidence. Lexicographic upgrade is implemented as an example of how an agent might revise his plausibility ordering in light of new evidence. Various examples are given how this apparatus may be used to model the contextual resolution of context-dependent or semantically incomplete utterances. The described form of abduction is limited and merely serves as a proof of concept, but the idea in general has good potential as one among many ways to build a bridge between semantics and pragmatics since inclusive context-dependence is ubiquitous. (shrink)
Reductionism is a central issue in the philosophy of biology. One common objection to reduction is that molecular explanation requires reference to higher-level properties, which I refer to as the context objection. I respond to this objection by arguing that a well-articulated notion of a mechanism and what I term mechanism extension enables one to accommodate the context-dependence of biological processes within a reductive explanation. The existence of emergent features in the context could be raised as an (...) objection to the possibility of reduction via this strategy. I argue that this objection can be overcome by showing that there is no tenable argument for the existence of emergent properties that are not susceptible to a reductive explanation. (shrink)
Recent empirical and philosophical research challenges the view that reason and emotion necessarily conflict with one another. Philosophers of science have, however, been slow in responding to this research. I argue that they continue to exclude emotion from their models of scientific reasoning because they typically see emotion as belonging to the context of discovery rather than of justification. I suggest, however, that recent work in epistemology challenges the authority usually granted the context distinction, taking a socially inflected (...) reliabilism as my example. Intersubjectively stable emotions may play a reliable role in the formation, which for the reliabilist also means the justification, of scientific beliefs. (shrink)
This paper has two central goals. The first is to argue for the metaphysical thesis that there is no such phenomena as genericity, i.e., to argue for a form of eliminativism about genericity. The second is to defend a novel theory of generic sentences on which the unpronounced quantifier expression Gen is an indexical. An important feature of the view is that much of what has appeared to be semantic work is moved into the metasemantics. Rather than create very complex (...) semantic clauses, the proposal is that those complexities are best dealt with in a metasemantic theory. Many of the puzzles which plague theories of generics are treated as instances of more general puzzles having to do with metasemantics and implicit, context-sensitive communication. (shrink)
With his distinction between the "context of discovery" and the "context of justification", Hans Reichenbach gave the traditional difference between genesis and validity a modern standard formulation. Reichenbach's distinction is one of the well-known ways in which the expression "context" is used in the theory of science. My argument is that Reichenbach's concept is unsuitable and leads to contradictions in the semantic fields of genesis and validity. I would like to demonstrate this by examining the different meanings (...) of Reichenbach's context distinction. My investigation also shows how the difference between genesis and validity precedes Reichenbach's context distinction and indicates approaches for meaningful applications of the concept of context to the phenomena designated by Reichenbach. I will begin by reconstructing the way in which Reichenbach introduces the distinction between discovery and justification as a difference of contexts (I). Drawing on the numerous meanings of the term "context", I will then emphasize some chief characteristics and review, through exemplification, the usage of this term. First of all, I turn to the context of discovery as the nonrational part of all scientific knowledge and show that this meaning cannot be defined consistently (la). For the context of justification, one can distinguish two main cases: the context of justification is either contrasted with the context of discovery, or it forms a unit there with. In the first case, the use of the context term becomes paradoxical, insofar as justification separated from scientific practice does not represent a field of reference which could be specifically contrasted with another field of reference (I b). In the second case, the unifying definitions contradict the contextual meaning of discovery and justification (1 c). In the last section, I point to a useful application of the concept of context which can be found in Reichenbach's argumentation and which refers to the practical conditions of justification(2). (shrink)
The paper highlights the dependence of the level of organizational trust on work ethic and aims to show that development of trust in organizations can be␣stimulated by raising the level of work ethic with organizational practices. Based on the framework by Kanungo, R. N. and A. M. Jaeger (1990, ‘Introduction: The Need for Indigenous Management In Developing Countries’, in A. M. Jaeger and R. N. Kanungo (eds.), Management in Developing Countries (Routledge, London), pp. 1–23), historical–cultural analysis of the Lithuanian (...) class='Hi'>context is carried out. The country is chosen as an example of a post-socialist context where work ethic and trust in the society tended to be rather low. The authors discuss organizational practices, particularly the ones related to people management, which can facilitate development of work ethic, and thus, trust in organizations operating in a post-socialist context. The importance of a processual approach to the development of organizational trust and the ethical content of organizational practices, which are aimed at developing organizational trust is highlighted. Directions for further research are indicated. (shrink)
In relation to the task of making an expedient selection from the available loci within the topical potential that strategic manoeuvring envisages for the argumentation stage, this paper proposes a version of topics, which is both inspired to the traditional doctrine of topics and consistent with the theoretical framing and the methodological tenets that are proper of modern semantics and current theory of argumentation. The argumentative relevance of communication context in its institutionalised and interpersonal components is brought to light. (...) Three main aspects are focussed on: the strong synergy of the topical and the endoxical components in argument construction, the use of topics in analysis and evaluation of arguments and the heuristic function of topics in the production process. (shrink)
Measures and theories of information abound, but there are few formalised methods for treating the contextuality that can manifest in different information systems. Quantum theory provides one possible formalism for treating information in context. This paper introduces a quantum inspired model of the human mental lexicon. This model is currently being experimentally investigated and we present a preliminary set of pilot data suggesting that concept combinations can indeed behave non-separably.
We show how to encode context-free string grammars, linear context-free tree grammars, and linear context-free rewriting systems as Abstract Categorial Grammars. These three encodings share the same constructs, the only difference being the interpretation of the composition of the production rules. It is interpreted as a first-order operation in the case of context-free string grammars, as a second-order operation in the case of linear context-free tree grammars, and as a third-order operation in the case of (...) linear context-free rewriting systems. This suggest the possibility of defining an Abstract Categorial Hierarchy. (shrink)
According to a view widely held by epistemic contextualists, the truth conditions of a knowledge claim depend on features of the context such as the presuppositions, interests and purposes of the conversational participants. Against this view, I defend an intentionalist account, according to which the truth conditions of a knowledge attribution are determined by the speaker’s intention. I show that an intentionalist version of contextualism has several advantages over its more widely accepted rival account.
Many arguments are affected by context sensitivity, because they include sentences that have different truth conditions in different contexts. Therefore, it is natural to think that a general criterion for evaluating arguments must take context sensitivity into account. One way to give substance to that thought is provided by the definition of validity offered by David Kaplan within his theory of indexicals. However, the route indicated by Kaplan is hindered by a problem whose importance is often underestimated. This (...) paper explores a different route, and outlines a definition of validity that does not run into that problem. Its moral is that Kaplan's definition is not the only plausible definition. This is not to say that the definition outlined is the only plausible definition or that it is correct in some absolute sense. There might be equally important problems with it that the paper does not take into account. But until such problems are found and brought up, the departure from Kaplan's route remains a viable option. (shrink)
A growing body of ethics research investigates gender diversity and governance on corporate boards, at individual and firm levels, in single country studies. In this study, we explore the environmental context of female representation on corporate boards of directors, using data from 43 countries. We suggest that women's representation on corporate boards may be shaped by the larger environment, including the social, political and economic structures of individual countries. We use logit regression to conduct our analysis. Our results indicate (...) that countries with higher representation of women on boards are more likely to have women in senior management and more equal ratios of male to female pay. However, we find that countries with a longer tradition of women's political representation are less likely to have high levels of female board representation. (shrink)
Based on the premise that what is relevant, consistent, or true may change from context to context, a formal framework of relevance and context is proposed in which • contexts are mathematical entities • each context has its own language with relevant implication • the languages of distinct contexts are connected by embeddings • inter-context deduction is supported by bridge rules • databases are sets of formulae tagged with deductive histories and the contexts they belong (...) to • abduction and revision are supported by a notion of consistency of formulae and sets of formulae which are relative to a context, and which can, in turn, be seen as constituents of agendas. (shrink)
With mention of Ogden and Richards' The Meaning of Meaning, and drawing on Mailinowski, for an opening example, Dewey argues for the importance of the relationship of interpretation and meaning, to context and and situation of usage or utterance. In this article, Dewey expounds, among other themes, on the the prospect of interpretation of a radically alien language and what this prospect tells us about linguistic meaning.
In this paper we suggest that there is a need to examine what is meant by “context” in Social Psychology and present an example of how to place identity in its social and institutional context. Taking the case of British naturalisation, the process whereby migrants become citizens, we show that the identity of naturalised citizens is defined by common-sense ideas about Britishness and by immigration policies. An analysis of policy documents on “earned citizenship” and interviews with naturalised citizens (...) shows that the distinction between “elite” and “non-elite” migrants is evident in both the “reified” sphere of policy and the “common sense” sphere of everyday identity construction. While social representations embedded in lay experience construct ethno-cultural similarity and difference, immigration policies engage in an institutionalised positioning process by determining migrants' rights of mobility. These spheres of knowledge and practice are not disconnected as these two levels of “managing otherness” overlap—it is the poorer, less skilled migrants, originating outside the West who epitomise difference (within a consensual sphere) and have less freedom of mobility (within a reified sphere). We show that the context of identity should be understood as simultaneously psychological and political. (shrink)
We examine if and to what extent choice dispositions can allow dependence on contexts and maintain consistency over time, in a dynamic environment under uncertainty. We focus on one of the context dependence properties, opportunity dependence because of being affected by anticipated regret, where the consequentialist choice framework is maintained. There are two sources of potential inconsistency: one is arrival of information, and the other is changing opportunities. First, we go over the general method of resolution of potential inconsistency, (...) by taking any kinds of inconsistency as given constraints. Second, we characterize a class of choice dispositions that are consistent to information arrival, but may be inconsistent to changing opportunities. Finally, we consider the overall requirement of dynamic consistency and show that it necessarily implies each of consistency to information arrival and independence of choice opportunities. The last result states that the two kinds of potential inconsistency cannot “compensate” each other to recover dynamic consistency overall. (shrink)
Context figures in the interpretation of utterances in many different ways. In the tradition of possible-worlds semantics, the seminal account of context-sensitive expressions such as indexicals and demonstratives is that of Kaplan's two-dimensional semantics (the content- character distinction), further pursued in various directions by Stalnaker, Chalmers, and others. This chapter introduces and assesses the notion of context-sensitivity presented in this group of approaches, with a special focus on how it relates to the notion of cognitive significance and (...) whether it includes an intuitively plausible range of expressions within its scope. The chapter concludes with a discussion of the prospects of using two-dimensional semantics to account for context-sensitive expressions in dynamic discourse. (shrink)
The past decade has seen the development of a perspective holding that technology is socially constructed. This paper examines the social construction of one group of technologies: systems for computer-supported cooperative work (CSCW). It describes the design of CSCW in Japan, with particular attention to the influence of culture on the design process. Two case studies are presented to illustrate the argument that culture is an important factor in technology design, despite commonly held assumptions about the neutrality and objectivity of (...) science and technology. The paper further argues that, by looking at CSCW systems as texts which reflect the context of their production and the society from which they come, we may be better able to understand the transformations that operate when these texts are ‘read’ in the contexts of their implementation. (shrink)
There is a need for further research to understand how social capital in the workplace can be promoted. This article studies the generation of social capital from a comprehensive perspective that integrates ethics and general management. We propose the concept of “ethical work context” as an influential antecedent of the social capital in the firm. The ethical work context, which is aligned with the “humanizing culture” approach proposed by Melé ( Journal of Business Ethics 45 (1), 3–14, 2003a (...) ), allows a broader comprehension of the concrete management practices and organizational dynamics that generate organizational social capital. It is argued that social capital, understood as a by-product of the ethical work context, results both from organizational design and ongoing managerial activity. Creating an ethical work context brings ethics and social capital into the realm of the general manager; a figure that has remained absent from the social capital literature. (shrink)
Considering the organization’s ethical context as a framework to investigate workplace phenomena, this field study of military reserve personnel examines the relationships among perceptions of psychosocial group variables, such as cohesiveness, helping behavior and peer leadership, employee job attitudes, and the likelihood of individuals’ withholding on-the-job effort, a form of organizational misbehavior. Hypotheses were tested with a sample of 290 individuals using structural equation modeling, and support for negative relationships between perceptions of positive group context and withholding effort (...) by individual employees was found. In addition, individual effort-performance expectancy and individual job satisfaction were negatively related to withholding effort. The findings provide evidence that individual perceptions of positive group context play a key role in the presence of misbehavior at work. The results indicate that positive group context might be an important element of ethical climate that should be managed to temper occurrence of such adverse work behavior. (shrink)
In Context and Content Robert Stalnaker develops a philosophical picture of the nature of speech and thought and the relations between them. Two themes in particular run through these collected essays: the role that the context in which speech takes place plays in accounting for the way language is used to express thought, and the role of the external environment in determining the contents of our thoughts. Stalnaker argues against the widespread assumption of the priority of linguistic over (...) mental representation, which he suggests has had a distorting influence on our understanding. The first part of the book develops a framework for representing contexts and the way they interact with the interpretation of what is said in them. This framework is used to help to explain a range of linguistic phenomena concerning presupposition and assertion, conditional statements, the attribution of beliefs, and the use of names, descriptions, and pronouns to refer. Stalnaker then draws out the conception of thought and its content that is implicit in this framework. He defends externalism about thought--the assumption that our thoughts have the contents they have in virtue of the way we are situated in the world--and explores the role of linguistic action and linguistic structure in determining the contents of our thoughts. Context and Content offers philosophers and cognitive scientists a summation of Stalnaker's important and influential work in this area. His new introduction to the volume gives an overview of this work and offers a convenient way in for those who are new to it. The Oxford Cognitive Science series is a new forum for the best contemporary work in this flourishing field, where various disciplines--cognitive psychology, philosophy, linguistics, cognitive neuroscience, and computational theory--join forces in the investigation of thought, awareness, understanding, and associated workings of the mind. Each book constitutes an original contribution to its subject, but will be accessible beyond the ranks of specialists, so as to reach a broad interdisciplinary readership. The series will be carefully shaped and steered with the aim of representing the most important developments in the field and bringing together its constituent disciplines. (shrink)
Three experiments test the theory that verb meanings are more malleable than noun meanings in different semantic contexts, making a previously seen verb difficult to remember when it appears in a new semantic context. Experiment 1 revealed that changing the direct object noun in a transitive sentence reduced recognition of a previously seen verb, whereas changing the verb had little impact on noun recognition. Experiment 2 revealed that verbs exhibited context effects more similar to those shown by superordinate (...) nouns rather than basic-level nouns. Experiment 3 demonstrated that the degree of meaning change in a target word resulting from changes in semantic context influenced the magnitude of context effects, but context effects remained larger for verbs than for nouns even when the degree of meaning change was similar for nouns and verbs. These results are discussed with respect to the imageability and grammatical roles played by nouns and verbs in a sentence. (shrink)
A dynamic context model of interactive behavior was developed to explain results from two experiments that tested the effects of interaction costs on encoding strategies, cognitive representations, and response selection processes in a decision-making and a judgment task. The model assumes that the dynamic context defined by the mixes of internal and external representations and processes are sensitive to the interaction cost imposed by the task environment. The model predicts that changes in the dynamic context may lead (...) to systematic biases in cognitive representations and processes that eventually influence decision-making and judgment outcomes. Consistent with the predictions by the model, results from the experiments showed that as interaction costs increased, encoding strategies and cognitive representations shifted from perception-based to memory-based. Memory-based comparisons of the stimuli enhanced the similarity and dominance effects, and led to stronger systematic biases in response outcomes in a choice task. However, in a judgment task, memory-based representations enhanced only the dominance effects. Results suggested that systematic response biases in the dominance context were caused by biases in the cognitive representations of the stimuli, but response biases in the similarity context were caused by biases in the comparison process induced by the choice task. Results suggest that changes in interaction costs not only change whether information was assessed from the external world or from memory but also introduce systematic biases in the cognitive representation of the information, which act as biased inputs to the subsequent decision-making and judgment processes. Results are consistent with the idea of interactive cognition, which proposes that representations and processes are contingent on the dynamic context defined by the information flow between the external task environment and internal cognition. (shrink)
I wish first to motivate very briefly two points about the kind of context sensitive semantics needed for attitude reports, namely that reports are about referents and about mental representations; then I will compare two proposals for treating the attitudes, both of which capture the two points in question.
The rationalization of context-based choice is usually based on the assumption that preferences are context-dependent. In this paper, we show that context-based choice can be due to the characteristics of the choice procedure applied by the individual and not to the dependence of preferences (stochastic or deterministic) on the context. Our arguments are illustrated focusing on the much-studied dominated-alternative effects.
In this paper we propose a new semantics, based on the notion of a "contextual model", that makes it possible to express and compare — within a unique formal framework — different views on the roles of various notions of context in knowledge ascriptions. We use it to provide a logical analysis of such positions as skeptical and moderate invariantism, contextualism, and subject-sensitive invariantism. A dynamic formalism is also proposed that offers new insights into a classical skeptical puzzle.
‘In Context’ is aimed at giving contextualization its rightful place in the study of argumentation. First, Frans H. van Eemeren explains the crucial role of context in a reconstructive analysis of argumentative discourse. He distinguishes four levels of contextualization. Second, he situates his approach to context in the field of argumentation studies by comparing it with Walton’s approach. He emphasizes the importance of distinguishing clearly between a normatively motivated theoretical ideal model and empirically-based communicative activity types. Third, (...) van Eemeren concentrates on the ‘macro-level’ of contextualization: contextualization in institutionalized communicative activity types. He makes clear that the macro-context of a communicative activity type can be characterized argumentatively by describing the disctinctive features of the empirical counterparts of the four stages of a critical discussion in the activity type concerned. Fourth, he points out what the consequences of the macrocontextualization of argumentative discourse in a certain communicative activity type are for the strategic maneuvering that may takes place and the identification of fallacies as derailments of strategic maneuvering. Fifth, van Eemeren draws some general conclusions regarding the role of contextualization in the analysis and evaluation of argumentative discourse. (shrink)
A brief account of epistemological models that try to unfold the intertheoretic context of theory change is proposed. It is stated that all of them has a host of drawbacks, the most salient one being the lack of adequate description of the research traditions interaction process. The epistemological model of mature theory change, eliminating the drawback, is contemplated and illustrated.