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Publication - Professor Richard Pettigrew

    An Accuracy‐Dominance Argument for Conditionalization


    Pettigrew, R & Briggs, R, 2018, ‘An Accuracy‐Dominance Argument for Conditionalization’. Noûs.


    Epistemic decision theorists aim to justify Bayesian norms by arguing that these norms further the goal of epistemic accuracy—having beliefs that are as close as possible to the truth. The standard defense of Probabilism appeals to accuracy dominance: for every belief state that violates the probability calculus, there is some probabilistic belief state that is more accurate, come what may. The standard defense of Conditionalization, on the other hand, appeals to expected accuracy: before the evidence is in, one should expect to do better by conditionalizing than by following any other rule. We present a new argument for Conditionalization that appeals to accuracy‐dominance, rather than expected accuracy. Our argument suggests that Conditionalization is a rule of coherence: plans that conflict with Conditionalization don't just prescribe bad responses to the evidence; they also give rise to inconsistent attitudes.

    Full details in the University publications repository