•  31
    Accuracy-First Epistemology and Scientific Progress
    Ergo: An Open Access Journal of Philosophy 11. 2024.
    The accuracy-first program attempts to ground epistemology in the norm that one’s beliefs should be as accurate as possible, where accuracy is measured using a scoring rule. We argue that considerations of scientific progress suggest that such a monism about epistemic value is untenable. In particular, we argue that counterexamples to the standard scoring rules are ubiquitous in the history of science, and hence that these scoring rules cannot be regarded as a precisification of our intuitive co…Read more
  •  29
    Remarks on Ángel Pinillos’s Why We Doubt
    International Journal for the Study of Skepticism 1-9. forthcoming.
    In these brief remarks, I describe the author’s Bayesian explication of the narrow function of the meta-cognitive, heuristic algorithm (pbs) that is at the heart of his psychological explanation of why we entertain skeptical doubts. I provide some critical remarks, and an alternative Bayesian approach that is (to my mind) somewhat more elegant than the author’s.
  • Closure, Counter-Closure, and Inferential Knowledge
    In Rodrigo Borges, Claudio de Almeida & Peter David Klein (eds.), Explaining Knowledge: New Essays on the Gettier Problem, Oxford University Press. pp. 312-324. 2017.
    The chapter begins with some general remarks about closure and counter-closure, and is followed with a discussion of the following: I (a) review some (alleged) counterexamples to counter-closure, I then continue by (b) discussing a popular strategy for responding to such counterexamples to counter-closure, and finally I (c) pose a dilemma for this popular strategy. Once I have discussed these three points I conclude the chapter by proposing that we reject counter-closure, but at the same time th…Read more
  •  836
    Deference Done Better
    with Kevin Dorst, Benjamin A. Levinstein, Bernhard Salow, and Brooke E. Husic
    Philosophical Perspectives 35 (1): 99-150. 2021.
    There are many things—call them ‘experts’—that you should defer to in forming your opinions. The trouble is, many experts are modest: they’re less than certain that they are worthy of deference. When this happens, the standard theories of deference break down: the most popular (“Reflection”-style) principles collapse to inconsistency, while their most popular (“New-Reflection”-style) variants allow you to defer to someone while regarding them as an anti-expert. We propose a middle way: deferring…Read more
  • Part IV. Collective entities and formal epistemology. Individual coherence and group coherence
    with Fabrizio Cariani Rachael Briggs and When to Defer to Supermajority Testimony
    In Jennifer Lackey (ed.), Essays in Collective Epistemology, Oxford University Press. 2014.
  •  83
    Remarks on staffel on full belief
    Philosophical Studies 180 (2): 385-393. 2022.
  •  66
    A Problem for Confirmation Measure Z
    Philosophy of Science 88 (4): 726-730. 2021.
    In this article, I present a serious problem for confirmation measure Z.
  •  6
    Studia Logica 86 (2): 147-148. 2007.
  •  1155
    Four Approaches to Supposition
    Ergo: An Open Access Journal of Philosophy 8 (26): 58-98. 2022.
    Suppositions can be introduced in either the indicative or subjunctive mood. The introduction of either type of supposition initiates judgments that may be either qualitative, binary judgments about whether a given proposition is acceptable or quantitative, numerical ones about how acceptable it is. As such, accounts of qualitative/quantitative judgment under indicative/subjunctive supposition have been developed in the literature. We explore these four different types of theories by systematica…Read more
  •  191
    Two Approaches to Belief Revision
    with Ted Shear
    Erkenntnis 84 (3): 487-518. 2019.
    In this paper, we compare and contrast two methods for the revision of qualitative beliefs. The first method is generated by a simplistic diachronic Lockean thesis requiring coherence with the agent’s posterior credences after conditionalization. The second method is the orthodox AGM approach to belief revision. Our primary aim is to determine when the two methods may disagree in their recommendations and when they must agree. We establish a number of novel results about their relative behavior.…Read more
  •  41
    Confirmation, causation, and Simpson's paradox
    Episteme 14 (3): 297-309. 2017.
    ABSTRACTIn this paper, I review some recent treatments of Simpson's Paradox, and I propose a new rationalizing explanation of its paradoxicality.
  • Introduction
    with Cherie Braden
    In Cherie Braden, Rodrigo Borges & Branden Fitelson (eds.), Themes From Klein, Springer Verlag. 2019.
  •  313
    As every philosopher knows, “the design argument” concludes that God exists from premisses that cite the adaptive complexity of organisms or the lawfulness and orderliness of the whole universe. Since 1859, it has formed the intellectual heart of creationist opposition to the Darwinian hypothesis that organisms evolved their adaptive features by the mindless process of natural selection. Although the design argument developed as a defense of theism, the logic of the argument in fact encompasses …Read more
  •  141
    Measuring Confirmation and Evidence
    with Ellery Elles
    Journal of Philosophy 97 (12): 663-672. 2000.
  •  34
    Studia Logica 86 (3): 351-352. 2007.
  •  84
    Probability, confirmation, and the conjunction fallacy
    Thinking and Reasoning 14 (2): 182-199. 2008.
    The conjunction fallacy has been a key topic in debates on the rationality of human reasoning and its limitations. Despite extensive inquiry, however, the attempt of providing a satisfactory account of the phenomenon has proven challenging. Here, we elaborate the suggestion (first discussed by Sides et al., 2001) that in standard conjunction problems the fallacious probability judgments experimentally observed are typically guided by sound assessments of confirmation relations, meant in terms of…Read more
  •  266
    Logical Foundations of Evidential Support
    Philosophy of Science 73 (5): 500-512. 2006.
    Carnap's inductive logic (or confirmation) project is revisited from an "increase in firmness" (or probabilistic relevance) point of view. It is argued that Carnap's main desiderata can be satisfied in this setting, without the need for a theory of "logical probability." The emphasis here will be on explaining how Carnap's epistemological desiderata for inductive logic will need to be modified in this new setting. The key move is to abandon Carnap's goal of bridging confirmation and credence, in…Read more
  •  96
    Let L be a sentential (object) language containing atoms ‘A’, ‘B’, . . . , and two logical connectives ‘&’ and ‘→’. In addition to these two logical connectives, L will also contain another binary connective ‘ ’, which is intended to be interpreted as the English indicative. In the meta-language for L , we will have two meta-linguistic operations: ‘ ’ and ‘ ’. ‘ ’ is a binary relation between individual sentences in L . It will be interpreted as “single premise entailment” (or “single premise de…Read more
  •  128
    The Strongest Possible Lewisian Triviality Result
    Thought: A Journal of Philosophy 4 (2): 69-74. 2015.
    The strongest possible Lewisian triviality result for the indicative conditional is proven
  •  41
    • Two competing explanations (independence of S i favors R over CB): (CB) there is a coherence bias in a’s S -formation process.
  •  118
    Accuracy, Language Dependence, and Joyce’s Argument for Probabilism
    Philosophy of Science 79 (1): 167-174. 2012.
    In this article, I explain how a variant of David Miller's argument concerning the language dependence of the accuracy of predictions can be applied to Joyce's notion of the accuracy of “estimates of numerical truth-values”. This leads to a potential problem for Joyce's accuracy-dominance-based argument for the conclusion that credences should obey the probability calculus.
  •  44
    • Several recent Bayesian discussions make use of “approximation” – Earman on the Quantitative Old Evidence Problem – Vranas on Quantitative Approaches to the Ravens Paradox – Dorling’s Quantitative Approach to Duhem–Quine – Strevens’s Quantitative Approach to Duhem–Quine – rThere are also examples not involving confirmation: E.g.
  •  102
    This talk is (mainly) about the relationship two types of epistemic norms: accuracy norms and coherence norms. A simple example that everyone will be familiar with
  •  41
    detail a question that, for a quarter of a century, remained open despite intense study by various researchers. Is the formula XC B = e(x e(e(e( ) e( )) z)) a single axiom for the classical equivalential calculus when the rules of inference consist..
  •  166
    Favoring, Likelihoodism, and Bayesianism (review)
    Philosophy and Phenomenological Research 83 (3): 666-672. 2011.
    This (brief) note is about the (evidential) “favoring” relation. Pre-theoretically, favoring is a three-place (epistemic) relation, between an evidential proposition E and two hypotheses H1 and H2. Favoring relations are expressed via locutions of the form: E favors H1 over H2. Strictly speaking, favoring should really be thought of as a four-place relation, between E, H1, H2, and a corpus of background evidence K. But, for present purposes (which won't address issues involving K), I will suppre…Read more
  •  17
    Review of Richard Swinburne (ed.), Bayes's Theorem (review)
    Notre Dame Philosophical Reviews 2003 (11). 2003.
  •  136
    Comments and Criticism: Measuring Confirmation and Evidence
    with Ellery Eells
    Journal of Philosophy 97 (12): 663-672. 2000.
    Bayesian epistemology suggests various ways of measuring the support that a piece of evidence provides a hypothesis. Such measures are defined in terms of a subjective probability assignment, pr, over propositions entertained by an agent. The most standard measure (where “H” stands for “hypothesis” and “E” stands for “evidence”) is: the difference measure: d(H,E) = pr(H/E) - pr(H).0 This may be called a “positive (probabilistic) relevance measure” of confirmation, since, according to it, a piece…Read more