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Duhemian Themes in Expected Utility Theory

In Anastasios Brenner and Jean Gayon (ed.), French Studies in the Philosophy of Science. Springer. pp. 303-357 (2009)

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  1. Can Redescriptions of Outcomes Salvage the Axioms of Decision Theory?Jean Baccelli & Philippe Mongin - forthcoming - Philosophical Studies:1-28.
    The basic axioms or formal conditions of decision theory, especially the ordering condition put on preferences and the axioms underlying the expected utility formula, are subject to a number of counter-examples, some of which can be endowed with normative value and thus fall within the ambit of a philosophical reflection on practical rationality. Against such counter-examples, a defensive strategy has been developed which consists in redescribing the outcomes of the available options in such a way that the threatened axioms or (...)
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  • Theory Choice, Good Sense and Social Consensus.Milena Ivanova & Cedric Paternotte - 2013 - Erkenntnis 78 (5):1109-1132.
    There has been a significant interest in the recent literature in developing a solution to the problem of theory choice which is both normative and descriptive, but agent-based rather than rule-based, originating from Pierre Duhem’s notion of ‘good sense’. In this paper we present the properties Duhem attributes to good sense in different contexts, before examining its current reconstructions advanced in the literature and their limitations. We propose an alternative account of good sense, seen as promoting social consensus in science, (...)
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  • Philippe Mongin (1950-2020).Jean Baccelli & Marcus Pivato - 2021 - Theory and Decision 90 (1):1-9.
    An obituary of Philippe Mongin (1950-2020).
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  • La Théorie de la Décision Et la Psychologie du Sens Commun.Philippe Mongin - 2011 - Social Science Information 50 (3-4):351-374.
    Taking the philosophical standpoint, this article compares the mathematical theory of individual decision-making with the folk psychology conception of action, desire and belief. It narrows down its topic by carrying the comparison vis-à-vis Savage's system and its technical concept of subjective probability, which is referred to the basic model of betting as in Ramsey. The argument is organized around three philosophical theses: (i) decision theory is nothing but folk psychology stated in formal language (Lewis), (ii) the former substantially improves on (...)
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  • The Allais Paradox: What It Became, What It Really Was, What It Now Suggests to Us.Philippe Mongin - 2019 - Economics and Philosophy 35 (3):423-459.
    Whereas many others have scrutinized the Allais paradox from a theoretical angle, we study the paradox from an historical perspective and link our findings to a suggestion as to how decision theory could make use of it today. We emphasize that Allais proposed the paradox as a normative argument, concerned with ‘the rational man’ and not the ‘real man’, to use his words. Moreover, and more subtly, we argue that Allais had an unusual sense of the normative, being concerned not (...)
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