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  1. Metanormative regress: an escape plan.Christian Tarsney - 2024 - Philosophical Studies 181 (5).
    How should you decide what to do when you’re uncertain about basic normative principles? A natural suggestion is to follow some "second-order:" norm: e.g., obey the most probable norm or maximize expected choiceworthiness. But what if you’re uncertain about second-order norms too—must you then invoke some third-order norm? If so, any norm-guided response to normative uncertainty appears doomed to a vicious regress. This paper aims to rescue second-order norms from the threat of regress. I first elaborate and defend the claim (...)
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  • Expected comparative utility theory: A new theory of instrumental rationality.David Robert - manuscript
    This paper aims to address the question of how one ought to choose when one is uncertain about what outcomes will result from one’s choices, but when one can nevertheless assign probabilities to the different possible outcomes. These choices are commonly referred to as choices (or decisions) under risk. I assume in this paper that one ought to make instrumentally rational choices—more precisely, one ought to adopt suitable means to one’s morally permissible ends. Expected utility (EU) theory is generally accepted (...)
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  • On Sense and Preference.James Fanciullo - 2022 - Journal of Moral Philosophy 19 (3):280-302.
    Determining the precise nature of the connection between preference, choice, and welfare has arguably been the central project in the field of welfare economics, which aims to offer a proper guide for economists in the making of policy decisions that affect people’s welfare. The two leading approaches here historically – the revealed preference and latent preference approaches – seem equally incapable of so guiding economists. I argue that the deadlock here is due to welfare economists’ failure to recognize a crucial (...)
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  • Explaining Normative Reasons.Daniel Fogal & Olle Risberg - 2023 - Noûs 57 (1):51-80.
    In this paper, we present and defend a natural yet novel analysis of normative reasons. According to what we call support-explanationism, for a fact to be a normative reason to φ is for it to explain why there's normative support for φ-ing. We critically consider the two main rival forms of explanationism—ought-explanationism, on which reasons explain facts about ought, and good-explanationism, on which reasons explain facts about goodness—as well as the popular Reasons-First view, which takes the notion of a normative (...)
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  • Consequences of Comparability.Cian Dorr, Jacob M. Nebel & Jake Zuehl - 2021 - Philosophical Perspectives 35 (1):70-98.
    We defend three controversial claims about preference, credence, and choice. First, all agents (not just rational ones) have complete preferences. Second, all agents (again, not just rational ones) have real-valued credences in every proposition in which they are confident to any degree. Third, there is almost always some unique thing we ought to do, want, or believe.
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  • Metanormative Regress: An Escape Plan.Christian Tarsney - manuscript
    How should you decide what to do when you're uncertain about basic normative principles (e.g., Kantianism vs. utilitarianism)? A natural suggestion is to follow some "second-order" norm: e.g., "comply with the first-order norm you regard as most probable" or "maximize expected choiceworthiness". But what if you're uncertain about second-order norms too -- must you then invoke some third-order norm? If so, it seems that any norm-guided response to normative uncertainty is doomed to a vicious regress. In this paper, I aim (...)
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  • Being More Realistic About Reasons: On Rationality and Reasons Perspectivism.Clayton Littlejohn - 2018 - Philosophy and Phenomenological Research 99 (3):605-627.
    This paper looks at whether it is possible to unify the requirements of rationality with the demands of normative reasons. It might seem impossible to do because one depends upon the agent’s perspective and the other upon features of the situation. Enter Reasons Perspectivism. Reasons perspectivists think they can show that rationality does consist in responding correctly to reasons by placing epistemic constraints on these reasons. They think that if normative reasons are subject to the right epistemic constraints, rational requirements (...)
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  • Expected Comparative Utility Theory: A New Theory of Rational Choice.David Robert - 2018 - Philosophical Forum 49 (1):19-37.
    In this paper, I argue for a new normative theory of rational choice under risk, namely expected comparative utility (ECU) theory. I first show that for any choice option, a, and for any state of the world, G, the measure of the choiceworthiness of a in G is the comparative utility (CU) of a in G—that is, the difference in utility, in G, between a and whichever alternative to a carries the greatest utility in G. On the basis of this (...)
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  • A restatement of expected comparative utility theory: A new theory of rational choice under risk.David Robert - 2021 - Philosophical Forum 52 (3):221-243.
    In this paper, I argue for a new normative theory of rational choice under risk, namely expected comparative utility (ECU) theory. I first show that for any choice option, a, and for any state of the world, G, the measure of the choiceworthiness of a in G is the comparative utility (CU) of a in G—that is, the difference in utility, in G, between a and whichever alternative to a carries the greatest utility in G. On the basis of this (...)
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  • The property rights approach to moral uncertainty.Harry R. Lloyd - manuscript
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  • The Predicament of Choice.Ralph Wedgwood - 2017 - In Russ Shafer-Landau (ed.), Oxford Studies in Metaethics 12. Oxford University Press. pp. 294-313.
    Normal agents in the actual world are limited: they cannot think about all the options that are available to them—or even about all options that are available to them according to their evidence. Moreover, agents cannot choose an option unless they have thought about that option. Such agents can be irrational in two ways: either by making their choice too quickly, without canvassing enough options, or by wasting time canvassing ever more options when they have already thought of enough options. (...)
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