University of Cambridge > > CamPoS (Cambridge Philosophy of Science) seminar > Causal decision theory and tragic evidence: Death in Damascus revisited

Causal decision theory and tragic evidence: Death in Damascus revisited

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Recent literature on causal decision theory (CDT) has featured much discussion of what Hare & Hedden call “decision dependence”—-the fact that, for a causalist, the expected utility of an act a can sometimes depend on how confident one is that one will perform a.

In this talk, I will focus on decision dependent cases in which CDTers believe that they are subject to tragic evidential correlations (henceforth TECs). According to the standard theory, the more confident a CDTer grows that she will perform a given act a in a TEC case, the more confident she becomes that she will regret doing a. Yet as Joyce (2012) puts it, in such cases the CDTer “[does] not…fully trust the accuracy of the future beliefs on which [her] regrets about [her act] will be based.” This talk will be devoted to sketching the accuracy argument both in TEC cases and in their causal analogues.

This talk is part of the CamPoS (Cambridge Philosophy of Science) seminar series.

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