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Bayesian Decision Theory, Subjective and Objective Probabilities, and Acceptance of Empirical Hypotheses

John C. Harsanyi
Synthese
Vol. 57, No. 3, Rationality and Objectivity: Philosophical and Psychological Conceptions, Part II (Dec., 1983), pp. 341-365
Published by: Springer
Stable URL: http://www.jstor.org/stable/20115945
Page Count: 25
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Bayesian Decision Theory, Subjective and Objective Probabilities, and Acceptance of Empirical Hypotheses
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Abstract

It is argued that we need a richer version of Bayesian decision theory, admitting both subjective and objective probabilities and providing rational criteria for choice of our prior probabilities. We also need a theory of tentative acceptance of empirical hypotheses. There is a discussion of subjective and of objective probabilities and of the relationship between them, as well as a discussion of the criteria used in choosing our prior probabilities, such as the principles of indifference and of maximum entropy, and the simplicity ranking of alternative hypotheses.

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