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The Propensity Theory: A Decision-Theoretic Restatement

M. Albert
Synthese
Vol. 156, No. 3, Bayesian Epistemology (Jun., 2007), pp. 587-603
Published by: Springer
Stable URL: http://www.jstor.org/stable/27653535
Page Count: 17
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The Propensity Theory: A Decision-Theoretic Restatement
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Abstract

Probability theory is important because of its relevance for decision making, which also means: its relevance for the single case. The propensity theory of objective probability, which addresses the single case, is subject to two problems: Humphreys' problem of inverse probabilities and the problem of the reference class. The paper solves both problems by restating the propensity theory using (an objectivist version of) Pearl's approach to causality and probability, and by applying a decision-theoretic perspective. Contrary to a widely held view, decision making on the basis of given propensities can proceed without a subjective-probability supplement to propensities.

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