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Sander Beckers
Utrecht University
  1. A Principled Approach to Defining Actual Causation.Sander Beckers & Joost Vennekens - 2016 - Synthese 195 (2):835-862.
    In this paper we present a new proposal for defining actual causation, i.e., the problem of deciding if one event caused another. We do so within the popular counterfactual tradition initiated by Lewis, which is characterised by attributing a fundamental role to counterfactual dependence. Unlike the currently prominent definitions, our approach proceeds from the ground up: we start from basic principles, and construct a definition of causation that satisfies them. We define the concepts of counterfactual dependence and production, and put (...)
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  2.  14
    AAAI: An Argument Against Artificial Intelligence.Sander Beckers - 2018 - In Vincent C. Müller (ed.), Philosophy and theory of artificial intelligence 2017. Berlin: Springer. pp. 235-247.
    The ethical concerns regarding the successful development of an Artifi- cial Intelligence have received a lot of attention lately. The idea is that even if we have good reason to believe that it is very unlikely, the mere possibility of an AI causing extreme human suffering is important enough to warrant serious consid- eration. Others look at this problem from the opposite perspective, namely that of the AI itself. Here the idea is that even if we have good reason to (...)
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  3.  49
    The Transitivity and Asymmetry of Actual Causation.Sander Beckers & Joost Vennekens - 2017 - Ergo: An Open Access Journal of Philosophy 4:1-27.
    The counterfactual tradition to defining actual causation has come a long way since Lewis started it off. However there are still important open problems that need to be solved. One of them is the (in)transitivity of causation. Endorsing transitivity was a major source of trouble for the approach taken by Lewis, which is why currently most approaches reject it. But transitivity has never lost its appeal, and there is a large literature devoted to understanding why this is so. Starting from (...)
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