Moving ego versus moving time: investigating the shared source of future-bias and near-bias

Synthese 202 (3):1-33 (2023)
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It has been hypothesized that our believing that, or its seeming to us as though, the world is in some way dynamical partially explains (and perhaps rationalizes) future-bias. Recent work has, in turn, found a correlation between future-bias and near-bias, suggesting that there is a common explanation for both. Call the claim that what partially explains our being both future- and near-biased is our believing/it seeming to us as though the world is dynamical, the dynamical explanation. We empirically test two versions of the dynamical explanation. The first is the moving ego explanation—according to which it is our belief that the ego moves, or our phenomenology as of the ego moving, that jointly (partially) explains future- and near-bias. The second is the moving time explanation—according to which it is our belief that time robustly passes, or our phenomenology as of robust passage, which jointly (partially) explain future- and near-bias. We found no evidence in favour of either explanation.

Author Profiles

Sam Baron
University of Melbourne
Kristie Miller
University of Sydney
Hannah Tierney
University of California, Davis
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