•  111
    We develop a conceptual and formal clarification of notion of surprise as a belief-based phenomenon by exploring a rich typology. Each kind of surprise is associated with a particular phase of cognitive processing and involves particular kinds of epistemic representations (representations and expectations under scrutiny, implicit beliefs, presuppositions). We define two main kinds of surprise: mismatch-based surprise and astonishment. In the central part of the paper we suggest how a formal mode…Read more
  •  104
    In this article we strive to provide a detailed and principled analysis of the role of beliefs in goal processing—that is, the cognitive transition that leads from a mere desire to a proper intention. The resulting model of belief-based goal processing has also relevant consequences for the analysis of intentions, and constitutes the necessary core of a constructive theory of intentions, i.e. a framework that not only analyzes what an intention is, but also explains how it becomes what it is. We…Read more
  •  96
    A convention or (tacit) agreement betwixt us: on reliance and its normative consequences
    with Luca Tummolini, Giulia Andrighetto, and Rosaria Conte
    Synthese 190 (4): 585-618. 2013.
    The aim of this paper is to clarify what kind of normativity characterizes a convention. First, we argue that conventions have normative consequences because they always involve a form of trust and reliance. We contend that it is by reference to a moral principle impinging on these aspects (i.e. the principle of Reliability) that interpersonal obligations and rights originate from conventional regularities. Second, we argue that the system of mutual expectations presupposed by conventions is a s…Read more
  •  89
    Hope: The power of wish and possibility
    with Maria Miceli
    Theory and Psychology 20 (2): 251-276. 2010.
    This work proposes an analysis of the cognitive and motivational components of hope, its basic properties, and the affective dispositions and behaviors it is likely to induce. In our view current treatments of hope do not fully account for its specificity, by making hope overlap with positive expectation or some specification of positive expectation. In contrast, we attempt to highlight the distinctive features of hope, pointing to its differences from positive expectation, as well as from a sen…Read more
  •  84
    Forgiveness: A Cognitive-Motivational Anatomy
    with Maria Miceli
    Journal for the Theory of Social Behaviour 41 (3): 260-290. 2011.
    This work aims to identify the constituents of forgiveness in terms of the forgiver's beliefs and motivating goals. After addressing the antecedents of forgiveness—a perceived wrong—and distinguishing the notion of mere harm from that of offense, we describe the victim's typical retributive reactions—revenge and resentment—and discuss their advantages and disadvantages. Then we focus on the forgiver's mind-set, pointing to the relationship between forgiveness and acceptance of the wrong, address…Read more
  •  64
    Acceptance as a positive attitude
    with Maria Miceli
    Philosophical Explorations 4 (2). 2001.
    We argue in favor of the adaptive value of acceptance and that it deserves a definite status within the 'positive paradigm'. Acceptance currently suffers from ambiguous connotations because of its lack of optimistic biases and its similarity to resignation. We endeavor to show that acceptance and resignation are distinct attitudes by exploring their relationships with various phenomena-frustration, disappointment, expectation, positive thinking, replanning, and accuracy. The resulting distinguis…Read more
  •  59
    Minds as social institutions
    Phenomenology and the Cognitive Sciences 13 (1): 121-143. 2014.
    I will first discuss how social interactions organize, coordinate, and specialize as “artifacts,” tools; how these tools are not only for coordination but for achieving something, for some outcome (goal/function), for a collective work. In particular, I will argue that these artifacts specify (predict and prescribe) the mental contents of the participants, both in terms of beliefs and acceptances and in terms of motives and plans. We have to revise the behavioristic view of “scripts” and “roles”…Read more
  •  51
    A cognitive approach to values
    with Maria Miceli
    Journal for the Theory of Social Behaviour 19 (2). 1989.
  •  50
    Artificial liars: Why computers will (necessarily) deceive us and each other (review)
    Ethics and Information Technology 2 (2): 113-119. 2000.
    In H-C interaction, computer supported cooperation andorganisation, computer mediated commerce, intelligentdata bases, teams of robots. etc. there will bepurposively deceiving computers. In particular, withinthe Agent-based paradigm we will have ``deceivingagents''''. Several kinds of deception will be present ininteraction with the user, or among people viacomputer, or among artificial agents not only formalicious reasons (war, commerce, fraud, etc.) butalso for goodwill and in our interest. So…Read more
  •  48
    The envious mind
    with Maria Miceli
    Cognition and Emotion 21 (3): 449-479. 2007.
    No abstract
  •  47
    The plausibility of defensive projection: A cognitive analysis
    with Maria Miceli
    Journal for the Theory of Social Behaviour 33 (3). 2003.
    This paper provides an analysis of the cognitive processes implied in the ego defense known as projection. Projection is first placed in the context of the general cognitive processes of attribution and ascription. Then we address defensive projection, and identify its distinctive features. In particular, whereas general projection consists in the ascription of one's own mental attitudes to others, defensive projection implies one's rejection of the ascribed mental states, and ascription is a me…Read more
  •  46
    Intentions in the Light of Goals
    Topoi 33 (1): 103-116. 2014.
    This paper presents a systematic analysis of the various steps of goal-processing and intention creation, as the final outcome of goal-driven action generation. Intention theory has to be founded on goal theory: intentions require means-end reasoning and planning, conflict resolution, coherence. The process of intention formation and intentional action execution is strictly based on specific sets of beliefs (predictions, evaluations, calculation of costs, responsibility beliefs, competence, etc.…Read more
  •  45
    Anger and Its Cousins
    with Maria Miceli
    Emotion Review 11 (1): 13-26. 2017.
    The widespread assumption that anger is a response to wrongdoing and motivates people to sanction it, as well as the lack of distinction between resentment and indignation, obscure notable differences among these three emotions in terms of their specific beliefs, goals, and action tendencies, their nonmoral or moral character, and the kinds of moral claim implied. We provide a cognitive-motivational analysis of anger, resentment, and indignation, showing that, while sharing a common core, they a…Read more
  •  45
    The Cognitive-Motivational Compound of Emotional Experience
    with Maria Miceli
    Emotion Review 1 (3): 223-231. 2009.
    We present an analysis of emotional experience in terms of beliefs and desires viewed as its minimal cognitive constituents. We argue that families of emotions can be identified because their members share some of these constituents. To document this claim, we analyze one family of emotions—which includes the feeling of inferiority, admiration, envy, and jealousy—trying to show that the distinctiveness of each emotion is due to the specific compound of beliefs and desires it implies, whereas the…Read more
  •  44
    How to silence one's conscience: Cognitive defenses against the feeling of guilt
    with Maria Miceli
    Journal for the Theory of Social Behaviour 28 (3). 1998.
    This work presents an analysis of the feeling of guilt and in particular of the cognitive defenses against it. It shows how the need to avoid or mitigate the feeling, with the suffering implied, affects the perception and judgment of oneself and others. It is in fact claimed that to copy with their guilt people try to alter the appraisal processes implied by the emotion. Once described the main cognitive components of the feeling of guilt, an analysis is offered of the interventions of the cogni…Read more
  •  40
    Symposium on ''Cognition and Rationality: Part I'' Relationships between rational decisions, human motives, and emotions (review)
    with Francesca Giardini and Francesca Marzo
    Mind and Society 5 (2): 173-197. 2006.
    In the decision-making and rationality research field, rational decision theory (RDT) has always been the main framework, thanks to the elegance and complexity of its mathematical tools. Unfortunately, the formal refinement of the theory is not accompanied by a satisfying predictive accuracy, thus there is a big gap between what is predicted by the theory and the behaviour of real subjects. Here we propose a new foundation of the RDT, which has to be based on a cognitive architecture for reason-…Read more
  •  33
    Is it a promise or a threat?
    with Marco Guerini
    Pragmatics and Cognition 15 (2): 277-311. 2007.
    In this paper we analyse the concepts of Promise and Threat and their inter-relations. Our objective is to study the uses of P and T in persuasion and to shed some light on related concepts such asrequesting,ordering,giving prizes,punishing,etc.First, we show that some Ps and Ts are used for persuasion and some are conditional in nature. Using general definitions of P and T and a broad notion of persuasion, four different typologies of P and T are introduced. They are distinguished on their cond…Read more
  •  32
    Through the agents' minds: Cognitive mediators of social action
    Mind and Society 1 (1): 109-140. 2000.
    Thesis: Macro-level social phenomena are implemented through the (social) actions and minds of the individuals. Without an explicit theory of the agents' minds that founds, agents' behavior we cannot understand macro-level social phenomena, and in particular how they work. AntiThesis: Mind is not enough: the theory of individual (social) mind and action is not enough to explain several macro-level social phenomena. First, there are pre-cognitive, objective social structures that constrain the ac…Read more
  •  31
    From conventions to prescriptions. Towards an integrated view of norms
    with Rosaria Conte
    Artificial Intelligence and Law 7 (4): 323-340. 1999.
    In this paper, a model of norms as cognitive objects is applied to establish connections between social conventions and prescriptions. Relevant literature on this issue, especially found in AI and the social sciences, will be shown to suffer from a dychotomic view: a conventionalistic view proposed by rationality and AI scientists; and a prescriptive view proposed by some philosophers of law (Kelsen 1934/1979, Hart 1961, Ross, 1958).In the present work, the attempt is made to fill the gap betwee…Read more
  •  31
    Why argue? Towards a cost–benefit analysis of argumentation
    Argument and Computation 1 (1): 71-91. 2010.
    This article proposes a cost-benefit analysis of argumentation, with the aim of highlighting the strategic considerations that govern the agent's decision to argue or not. In spite of its paramount importance, the topic of argumentative decision-making has not received substantial attention in argumentation theories so far. We offer an explanation for this lack of consideration and propose a tripartite taxonomy and detailed description of the strategic reasons considered by arguers in their deci…Read more
  •  24
    Trust, relevance, and arguments
    Argument and Computation 5 (2-3): 216-236. 2014.
    This paper outlines an integrated approach to trust and relevance with respect to arguments: in particular, it is suggested that trust in relevance has a central role in argumentation. We first distinguish two types of argumentative relevance: internal relevance, i.e. the extent to which a premise has a bearing on its purported conclusion, and external relevance, i.e. a measure of how much a whole argument is pertinent to the matter under discussion, in the broader dialogical context where it is…Read more
  •  24
    The Mental Path of Norms
    with Rosaria Conte
    Ratio Juris 19 (4): 501-517. 2006.
  •  23
    Prescribed mental attitudes in goal-adoption and Norm-adoption
    Artificial Intelligence and Law 7 (1): 37-50. 1999.
    The general aim of this work is to show the importance of the adressee's mind as planned by the author of a speech act or of a norm; in particular, how important are the expected motivations for goal adoption. We show that speech acts differ from one another for the different motivations the speaker is attempting to obtain from the hearer. The description of the participants' social positions is not sufficient. Important conflicts can arise which are not relative to what to do, but to the differ…Read more
  •  23
    Emergent functionality among intelligent systems: Cooperation within and without minds (review)
    with Rosaria Conte
    AI and Society 6 (1): 78-87. 1992.
    In this paper, the current AI view that emergent functionalities apply only to the study of subcognitive agents is questioned; a hypercognitive view of autonomous agents as proposed in some AI subareas is also rejected. As an alternative view, a unified theory of social interaction is proposed which allows for the consideration of both cognitive and extracognitive social relations. A notion of functional effect is proposed, and the application of a formal model of cooperation is illustrated. Fun…Read more
  •  21
    Contempt and disgust: the emotions of disrespect
    with Maria Miceli
    Journal for the Theory of Social Behaviour 48 (2): 205-229. 2018.
    Contempt and disgust share a number of features which distinguish them from other hostile emotions: they both present two distinct facets—a nonmoral facet and a moral one; they both imply a negative evaluation of the dispositional kind as well as disrespect towards the target of the feeling; and they trigger avoidance and exclusion action tendencies. However, while sharing a common core, contempt and disgust are in our view distinct emotions, qualified by different cognitive-motivational feature…Read more
  •  21
    More than control freaks: Evaluative and motivational functions of goals
    Behavioral and Brain Sciences 31 (1): 35-36. 2008.
    True to its sensorimotor inspiration, Hurley's shared circuits model (SCM) describes goal-states only within a homeostatic mechanism for action control, neglecting to consider other functions of goals control freaks.”
  •  19
    Consciousness or consciousnesses? Modeling for disentangling
    International Journal of Machine Consciousness 2 (1): 27-30. 2010.