Objective Bayesianism, Bayesian conditionalisation and voluntarism

Williamson, J. (2011) Objective Bayesianism, Bayesian conditionalisation and voluntarism. Synthese, 178 (1). pp. 67-85. ISSN 0039-7857. (The full text of this publication is not available from this repository)

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Official URL
http://dx.doi.org/10.1007/s11229-009-9515-y

Abstract

Objective Bayesianism has been criticised on the grounds that objective Bayesian updating, which on a finite outcome space appeals to the maximum entropy principle, differs from Bayesian conditionalisation. The main task of this paper is to show that this objection backfires: the difference between the two forms of updating reflects negatively on Bayesian conditionalisation rather than on objective Bayesian updating. The paper also reviews some existing criticisms and justifications of conditionalisation, arguing in particular that the diachronic Dutch book justification fails because diachronic Dutch book arguments are subject to a reductio: in certain circumstances one can Dutch book an agent however she changes her degrees of belief. One may also criticise objective Bayesianism on the grounds that its norms are not compulsory but voluntary, the result of a stance. It is argued that this second objection also misses the mark, since objective Bayesian norms are tied up in the very notion of degrees of belief.

Item Type: Article
Subjects: B Philosophy. Psychology. Religion > B Philosophy (General)
Q Science > QA Mathematics (inc Computing science) > QA273 Probabilities
Divisions: Faculties > Humanities > School of European Culture and Languages
Depositing User: Jon Williamson
Date Deposited: 13 Dec 2010 11:40
Last Modified: 20 Jan 2012 15:04
Resource URI: http://kar.kent.ac.uk/id/eprint/26143 (The current URI for this page, for reference purposes)
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