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  1. The Modal Future: A Theory of Future-Directed Thought and Talk.Fabrizio Cariani - 2021 - Cambridge, UK: Cambridge University Press.
    Provisional draft, pre-production copy of my book “The Modal Future” (forthcoming with Cambridge University Press).
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  • Algorithmic Fairness and the Situated Dynamics of Justice.Sina Fazelpour, Zachary C. Lipton & David Danks - 2022 - Canadian Journal of Philosophy 52 (1):44-60.
    Machine learning algorithms are increasingly used to shape high-stake allocations, sparking research efforts to orient algorithm design towards ideals of justice and fairness. In this research on algorithmic fairness, normative theorizing has primarily focused on identification of “ideally fair” target states. In this paper, we argue that this preoccupation with target states in abstraction from the situated dynamics of deployment is misguided. We propose a framework that takes dynamic trajectories as direct objects of moral appraisal, highlighting three respects in which (...)
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  • Counterfactual Theories of Causation.Peter Menzies - 2008 - Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy.
    The basic idea of counterfactual theories of causation is that the meaning of causal claims can be explained in terms of counterfactual conditionals of the form “If A had not occurred, C would not have occurred”. While counterfactual analyses have been given of type-causal concepts, most counterfactual analyses have focused on singular causal or token-causal claims of the form “event c caused event e”. Analyses of token-causation have become popular in the last thirty years, especially since the development in the (...)
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  • It's Not What You Did, It's What You Could Have Done.Regan M. Bernhard, Hannah LeBaron & Jonathan Phillips - 2022 - Cognition 228:105222.
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  • An Interaction Effect of Norm Violations on Causal Judgment.Maureen Gill, Jonathan F. Kominsky, Thomas F. Icard & Joshua Knobe - 2022 - Cognition 228:105183.
    Existing research has shown that norm violations influence causal judgments, and a number of different models have been developed to explain these effects. One such model, the necessity/sufficiency model, predicts an interac- tion pattern in people’s judgments. Specifically, it predicts that when people are judging the degree to which a particular factor is a cause, there should be an interaction between (a) the degree to which that factor violates a norm and (b) the degree to which another factor in the (...)
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  • Ordinary Causal Attributions, Norms, and Gradability.Jan Garcia Olier & Markus Kneer -
    There is a large literature exploring the effect of norms on the attribution of causation. Empirical research on this so-called “norm effect” has predominantly focused on two data points: A situation in which an agent violates a salient norm, and one in which there is no violation of a salient norm. Since the phenomenon is understood in bivalent terms (norm infraction vs. no norm infraction), most explanations thereof have the same structure. In this paper, we report several studies (total N=479) (...)
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  • Projects and Methods of Experimental Philosophy.Eugen Fischer & Justin Sytsma - forthcoming - In Alexander Max Bauer & Stephan Kornmesser (eds.), The Compact Compendium of Experimental Philosophy. Berlin: De Gruyter.
    How does experimental philosophy address philosophical questions and problems? That is: What projects does experimental philosophy pursue? What is their philosophical relevance? And what empirical methods do they employ? Answers to these questions will reveal how experimental philosophy can contribute to the longstanding ambition of placing philosophy on the ‘secure path of a science’, as Kant put it. We argue that experimental philosophy has introduced a new methodological perspective – a ‘meta-philosophical naturalism’ that addresses philosophical questions about a phenomenon by (...)
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  • Analytic Causal Knowledge for Constructing Useable Empirical Causal Knowledge: Two Experiments on Pre‐Schoolers.Patricia W. Cheng, Catherine M. Sandhofer & Mimi Liljeholm - 2022 - Cognitive Science 46 (5):e13137.
    Cognitive Science, Volume 46, Issue 5, May 2022.
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  • Causation Comes in Degrees.Huzeyfe Demirtas - 2022 - Synthese 200 (1):1-17.
    Which country, politician, or policy is more of a cause of the Covid-19 pandemic death toll? Which of the two factories causally contributed more to the pollution of the nearby river? A wide-ranging portion of our everyday thought and talk, and attitudes rely on a graded notion of causation. However, it is sometimes highlighted that on most contemporary accounts, causation is on-off. Some philosophers further question the legitimacy of talk of degrees of causation and suggest that we avoid it. Some (...)
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  • A Counterfactual Simulation Model of Causation by Omission.Tobias Gerstenberg & Simon Stephan - 2021 - Cognition 216:104842.
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  • Cause and Burn.David Rose, Eric Sievers & Shaun Nichols - 2021 - Cognition 207 (104517):104517.
    Many philosophers maintain that causation is to be explicated in terms of a kind of dependence between cause and effect. These “dependence” theories are opposed by “production” accounts which hold that there is some more fundamental causal “oomph”. A wide range of experimental research on everyday causal judgments seems to indicate that ordinary people operate primarily with a dependence-based notion of causation. For example, people tend to say that absences and double preventers are causes. We argue that the impression that (...)
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  • Causal Responsibility and Robust Causation.Guy Grinfeld, David Lagnado, Tobias Gerstenberg, James F. Woodward & Marius Usher - 2020 - Frontiers in Psychology 11:1069.
    How do people judge the degree of causal responsibility that an agent has for the outcomes of her actions? We show that a relatively unexplored factor -- the robustness of the causal chain linking the agent’s action and the outcome -- influences judgments of causal responsibility of the agent. In three experiments, we vary robustness by manipulating the number of background circumstances under which the action causes the effect, and find that causal responsibility judgments increase with robustness. In the first (...)
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  • Double Prevention, Causal Judgments, and Counterfactuals.Paul Henne & Kevin O'Neill - 2022 - Cognitive Science 46 (5):e13127.
    Cognitive Science, Volume 46, Issue 5, May 2022.
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  • Causal Judgment in the Wild: Evidence From the 2020 U.S. Presidential Election.Tadeg Quillien & Michael Barlev - 2022 - Cognitive Science 46 (2):e13101.
    Cognitive Science, Volume 46, Issue 2, February 2022.
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  • Causal Judgments About Atypical Actions Are Influenced by Agents' Epistemic States.Lara Kirfel & David Lagnado - 2021 - Cognition 212:104721.
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  • Norms in Counterfactual Selection.Sina Fazelpour - 2021 - Philosophy and Phenomenological Research 103 (1):114-139.
    Philosophy and Phenomenological Research, EarlyView.
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  • Immoral Professors and Malfunctioning Tools: Counterfactual Relevance Accounts Explain the Effect of Norm Violations on Causal Selection.Jonathan F. Kominsky & Jonathan Phillips - 2019 - Cognitive Science 43 (11).
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  • Confidence and Gradation in Causal Judgment.Kevin O'Neill, Paul Henne, Paul Bello, John Pearson & Felipe De Brigard - 2022 - Cognition 223:105036.
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  • The Psychological Representation of Modality.Jonathan Phillips & Joshua Knobe - 2018 - Mind and Language 33 (1):65-94.
    A series of recent studies have explored the impact of people's judgments regarding physical law, morality, and probability. Surprisingly, such studies indicate that these three apparently unrelated types of judgments often have precisely the same impact. We argue that these findings provide evidence for a more general hypothesis about the kind of cognition people use to think about possibilities. Specifically, we suggest that this aspect of people's cognition is best understood using an idea developed within work in the formal semantics (...)
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  • Norms Affect Prospective Causal Judgments.Paul Henne, Kevin O’Neill, Paul Bello, Sangeet Khemlani & Felipe De Brigard - 2021 - Cognitive Science 45 (1):e12931.
    People more frequently select norm-violating factors, relative to norm- conforming ones, as the cause of some outcome. Until recently, this abnormal-selection effect has been studied using retrospective vignette-based paradigms. We use a novel set of video stimuli to investigate this effect for prospective causal judgments—i.e., judgments about the cause of some future outcome. Four experiments show that people more frequently select norm- violating factors, relative to norm-conforming ones, as the cause of some future outcome. We show that the abnormal-selection effects (...)
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  • Causation and the Silly Norm Effect.Levin Güver & Markus Kneer - forthcoming - In Stefan Magen & Karolina Prochownik (eds.), Advances of Experimental Philosophy of Law. Bloomsbury Press.
    In many spheres, the law takes the legal concept of causation to correspond to the folk concept (the correspondence assumption). Courts, including the US Supreme Court, tend to insist on the "common understanding" and that which is "natural to say" (Burrage v. United States) when it comes to expressions relating to causation, and frequently refuse to clarify the expression to juries. As recent work in psychology and experimental philosophy has uncovered, lay attributions of causation are susceptible to a great number (...)
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  • A Simple Definition of ‘Intentionally’.Tadeg Quillien & Tamsin C. German - 2021 - Cognition 214:104806.
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  • Recent Empirical Work on the Relationship Between Causal Judgements and Norms.Pascale Willemsen & Lara Kirfel - 2019 - Philosophy Compass 14 (1):e12562.
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  • Time and Singular Causation—A Computational Model.Simon Stephan, Ralf Mayrhofer & Michael R. Waldmann - 2020 - Cognitive Science 44 (7).
    Causal queries about singular cases, which inquire whether specific events were causally connected, are prevalent in daily life and important in professional disciplines such as the law, medicine, or engineering. Because causal links cannot be directly observed, singular causation judgments require an assessment of whether a co‐occurrence of two events c and e was causal or simply coincidental. How can this decision be made? Building on previous work by Cheng and Novick (2005) and Stephan and Waldmann (2018), we propose a (...)
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  • Reversing the Norm Effect on Causal Attributions.John Schwenkler & Justin Sytsma - manuscript
    Research in the psychology of causal thinking has frequently revealed effects of normative considerations on causal attributions, where participants tend to assign causality more strongly to agents who violate a norm in bringing about an outcome. Across several experiments, we show that it is possible to reverse this norm effect when the outcome in question is good rather than bad: in these cases, participants assign causality more strongly to a norm-conforming agent than to an agent who violates a norm. We (...)
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  • Foundations of a Probabilistic Theory of Causal Strength.Jan Sprenger - 2018 - Philosophical Review 127 (3):371-398.
    This paper develops axiomatic foundations for a probabilistic-interventionist theory of causal strength. Transferring methods from Bayesian confirmation theory, I proceed in three steps: I develop a framework for defining and comparing measures of causal strength; I argue that no single measure can satisfy all natural constraints; I prove two representation theorems for popular measures of causal strength: Pearl's causal effect measure and Eells' difference measure. In other words, I demonstrate these two measures can be derived from a set of plausible (...)
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  • Causation, Responsibility, and Typicality.Justin Sytsma - 2021 - Review of Philosophy and Psychology 12 (4):699-719.
    There is ample evidence that violations of injunctive norms impact ordinary causal attributions. This has struck some as deeply surprising, taking the ordinary concept of causation to be purely descriptive. Our explanation of the findings—the responsibility view—rejects this: we contend that the concept is in fact partly normative, being akin to concepts like responsibility and accountability. Based on this account, we predicted a very different pattern of results for causal attributions when an agent violates a statistical norm. And this pattern (...)
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  • The Average Isn’T Normal.Joshua Knobe & Henry Cowles - manuscript
    Within contemporary science, it is common practice to compare data points to the _average_, i.e., to the statistical mean. Because this practice is so familiar, it might at first appear not to be the sort of thing that requires explanation. But recent research in cognitive science gives us reason to adopt the opposite perspective. Research on the cognitive processes involved in people’s ordinary efforts to make sense of the world suggests that, instead of using a purely statistical notion of the (...)
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  • On the Instrumental Value of Hypothetical and Counterfactual Thought.Thomas Icard, Fiery Cushman & Joshua Knobe - 2018 - Proceedings of the 40th Annual Conference of the Cognitive Science Society.
    People often engage in “offline simulation”, considering what would happen if they performed certain actions in the future, or had performed different actions in the past. Prior research shows that these simulations are biased towards actions a person considers to be good—i.e., likely to pay off. We ask whether, and why, this bias might be adaptive. Through computational experiments we compare five agents who differ only in the way they engage in offline simulation, across a variety of different environment types. (...)
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  • How Pills Undermine Skills: Moralization of Cognitive Enhancement and Causal Selection.Emilian Mihailov, Blanca Rodríguez López, Florian Cova & Ivar R. Hannikainen - 2021 - Consciousness and Cognition 91:103120.
    Despite the promise to boost human potential and wellbeing, enhancement drugs face recurring ethical scrutiny. The present studies examined attitudes toward cognitive enhancement in order to learn more about these ethical concerns, who has them, and the circumstances in which they arise. Fairness-based concerns underlay opposition to competitive use—even though enhancement drugs were described as legal, accessible and affordable. Moral values also influenced how subsequent rewards were causally explained: Opposition to competitive use reduced the causal contribution of the enhanced winner’s (...)
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  • Counterfactual Thinking and Recency Effects in Causal Judgment.Paul Henne, Aleksandra Kulesza, Karla Perez & Augustana Houcek - 2021 - Cognition 212:104708.
    People tend to judge more recent events, relative to earlier ones, as the cause of some particular outcome. For instance, people are more inclined to judge that the last basket, rather than the first, caused the team to win the basketball game. This recency effect, however, reverses in cases of overdetermination: people judge that earlier events, rather than more recent ones, caused the outcome when the event is individually sufficient but not individually necessary for the outcome. In five experiments (N (...)
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  • A Counterfactual Explanation for the Action Effect in Causal Judgment.Paul Henne, Laura Niemi, Ángel Pinillos, Felipe De Brigard & Joshua Knobe - 2019 - Cognition 190:157-164.
    People’s causal judgments are susceptible to the action effect, whereby they judge actions to be more causal than inactions. We offer a new explanation for this effect, the counterfactual explanation: people judge actions to be more causal than inactions because they are more inclined to consider the counterfactual alternatives to actions than to consider counterfactual alternatives to inactions. Experiment 1a conceptually replicates the original action effect for causal judgments. Experiment 1b confirms a novel prediction of the new explanation, the reverse (...)
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  • What Comes to Mind?Adam Bear, Samantha Bensinger, Julian Jara-Ettinger, Joshua Knobe & Fiery Cushman - 2020 - Cognition 194:104057.
    When solving problems, like making predictions or choices, people often “sample” possibilities into mind. Here, we consider whether there is structure to the kinds of thoughts people sample by default—that is, without an explicit goal. Across three experiments we found that what comes to mind by default are samples from a probability distribution that combines what people think is likely and what they think is good. Experiment 1 found that the first quantities that come to mind for everyday behaviors and (...)
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  • How We Know What Not To Think.Jonathan Phillips, Adam Morris & Fiery Cushman - 2019 - Trends in Cognitive Sciences 23 (12):1026-1040.
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