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  1. Reasoning Studies. From Single Norms to Individual Differences.Niels Skovgaard-Olsen - 2022 - Dissertation, University of Freiburg
    Habilitation thesis in psychology. The book consists of a collection of reasoning studies. The experimental investigations will take us from people’s reasoning about probabilities, entailments, pragmatic factors, argumentation, and causality to morality. An overarching theme of the book is norm pluralism and individual differences in rationality research.
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  • Possible worlds truth table task.Niels Skovgaard-Olsen, Peter Collins & Karl Christoph Klauer - 2023 - Cognition 238 (105507):1-24.
    In this paper, a novel experimental task is developed for testing the highly influential, but experimentally underexplored, possible worlds account of conditionals (Stalnaker, 1968; Lewis, 1973). In Experiment 1, this new task is used to test both indicative and subjunctive conditionals. For indicative conditionals, five competing truth tables are compared, including the previously untested, multi-dimensional possible worlds semantics of Bradley (2012). In Experiment 2, these results are replicated and it is shown that they cannot be accounted for by an alternative (...)
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  • Williamson’s Abductive Case for the Material Conditional Account.Robert van Rooij, Karolina Krzyżanowska & Igor Douven - 2023 - Studia Logica 111 (4):653-685.
    InSuppose and Tell, Williamson makes a new and original attempt to defend the material conditional account of indicative conditionals. His overarching argument is that this account offers the best explanation of the data concerning how people evaluate and use such conditionals. We argue that Williamson overlooks several important alternative explanations, some of which appear to explain the relevant data at least as well as, or even better than, the material conditional account does. Along the way, we also show that Williamson (...)
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  • The Dialogical Entailment Task.Niels Skovgaard-Olsen - 2019 - Cognition (C):104010.
    In this paper, a critical discussion is made of the role of entailments in the so-called New Paradigm of psychology of reasoning based on Bayesian models of rationality (Elqayam & Over, 2013). It is argued that assessments of probabilistic coherence cannot stand on their own, but that they need to be integrated with empirical studies of intuitive entailment judgments. This need is motivated not just by the requirements of probability theory itself, but also by a need to enhance the interdisciplinary (...)
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  • Conditionals and the Hierarchy of Causal Queries.Niels Skovgaard-Olsen, Simon Stephan & Michael R. Waldmann - 2021 - Journal of Experimental Psychology: General 1 (12):2472-2505.
    Recent studies indicate that indicative conditionals like "If people wear masks, the spread of Covid-19 will be diminished" require a probabilistic dependency between their antecedents and consequents to be acceptable (Skovgaard-Olsen et al., 2016). But it is easy to make the slip from this claim to the thesis that indicative conditionals are acceptable only if this probabilistic dependency results from a causal relation between antecedent and consequent. According to Pearl (2009), understanding a causal relation involves multiple, hierarchically organized conceptual dimensions: (...)
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  • The Ramsey Test and Evidential Support Theory.Michał Sikorski - 2022 - Journal of Logic, Language and Information 31 (3):493-504.
    The Ramsey Test is considered to be the default test for the acceptability of indicative conditionals. I will argue that it is incompatible with some of the recent developments in conceptualizing conditionals, namely the growing empirical evidence for the _Relevance Hypothesis_. According to the hypothesis, one of the necessary conditions of acceptability for an indicative conditional is its antecedent being positively probabilistically relevant for the consequent. The source of the idea is _Evidential Support Theory_ presented in Douven (2008). I will (...)
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  • A Study on the Sufficient Conditional and the Necessary Conditional With Chinese and French Participants.Jing Shao, Dilane Tikiri Banda & Jean Baratgin - 2022 - Frontiers in Psychology 13.
    According to the weak version of linguistic relativity, also called the Sapir-Whorf hypothesis, the features of an individual’s native language influence his worldview and perception. We decided to test this hypothesis on the sufficient conditional and the necessary conditional, expressed differently in Chinese and French. In Chinese, connectors for both conditionals exist and are used in everyday life, while there is only a connector for the sufficient conditional in French. A first hypothesis follows from linguistic relativity: for the necessary conditional, (...)
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  • Conditionals and specific links—an experimental study.Wojciech Rostworowski, Natalia Pietrulewicz & Marcin Bedkowski - 2021 - Synthese 199 (3-4):7365-7399.
    Based on the new experimental evidence, we argue that a link between a conditional antecedent and the consequent is semantically expressed rather than pragmatically conveyed. In our paper, we focus on particular kinds of links which conditionals may convey in a context. For instance, a conditional ‘If p, q’ may convey a thought equivalent to ‘p will cause q’, ‘p is the best explanation for q’, ‘q follows from p’, etcetera. The traditional theoretical literature on conditionals seems to imply that (...)
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  • Towards a theory of abduction based on conditionals.Rolf Pfister - 2022 - Synthese 200 (3):1-30.
    Abduction is considered the most powerful, but also the most controversially discussed type of inference. Based on an analysis of Peirce’s retroduction, Lipton’s Inference to the Best Explanation and other theories, a new theory of abduction is proposed. It considers abduction not as intrinsically explanatory but as intrinsically conditional: for a given fact, abduction allows one to infer a fact that implies it. There are three types of abduction: Selective abduction selects an already known conditional whose consequent is the given (...)
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  • Abductive conditionals as a test case for inferentialism.Patricia Mirabile & Igor Douven - 2020 - Cognition 200 (C):104232.
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  • Decomposing relevance in conditionals.Daniel Lassiter - 2023 - Mind and Language 38 (3):644-668.
    Conditionals frequently convey that the antecedent is relevant to the consequent. Recently many authors have argued that this relevance is part of the conventional meaning of conditionals, but this approach fails to account for many examples where a conditional is used to conveyirrelevance of antecedent to consequent. Both types of conditionals are best explained by a conventional meaning with no relevance requirement, and a separate process of coherence establishment among successive clauses in discourse. This account is supported by the distribution (...)
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  • Conceptual spaces and the strength of similarity-based arguments.Igor Douven, Shira Elqayam, Peter Gärdenfors & Patricia Mirabile - 2022 - Cognition 218 (C):104951.
  • Arbitrating norms for reasoning tasks.Aliya R. Dewey - 2022 - Synthese 200 (6):1-26.
    The psychology of reasoning uses norms to categorize responses to reasoning tasks as correct or incorrect in order to interpret the responses and compare them across reasoning tasks. This raises the arbitration problem: any number of norms can be used to evaluate the responses to any reasoning task and there doesn’t seem to be a principled way to arbitrate among them. Elqayam and Evans have argued that this problem is insoluble, so they call for the psychology of reasoning to dispense (...)
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  • Norm Conflicts and Epistemic Modals.Niels Skovgaard-Olsen & John Cantwell - 2023 - Cognitive Psychology 145 (101591):1-30.
    Statements containing epistemic modals (e.g., “by spring 2023 most European countries may have the Covid-19 pandemic under control”) are common expressions of epistemic uncertainty. In this paper, previous published findings (Knobe & Yalcin, 2014; Khoo & Phillips, 2018) on the opposition between Contextualism and Relativism for epistemic modals are re-examined. It is found that these findings contain a substantial degree of individual variation. To investigate whether participants differ in their interpretation of epistemic modals, an experiment with multiple phases and sessions (...)
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  • Ranking Theory.Gabriele Kern-Isberner, Niels Skovgaard-Olsen & Wolfgang Spohn - 2021 - In Markus Knauff & Wolfgang Spohn (eds.), The Handbook of Rationality. pp. 337-345.
    Ranking theory is one of the salient formal representations of doxastic states. It differs from others in being able to represent belief in a proposition (= taking it to be true), to also represent degrees of belief (i.e. beliefs as more or less firm), and thus to generally account for the dynamics of these beliefs. It does so on the basis of fundamental and compelling rationality postulates and is hence one way of explicating the rational structure of doxastic states. Thereby (...)
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  • Relevance and Conditionals: A Synopsis of Open Pragmatic and Semantic Issues.Niels Skovgaard-Olsen - 2020 - In S. Elqayam, Igor Douven, J. Evans & N. Cruz (eds.), Logic and Uncertainty in the Human Mind: A Tribute to David E. Over. Routledge.
    Recently several papers have reported relevance effects on the cognitive assessments of indicative conditionals, which pose an explanatory challenge to the Suppositional Theory of conditionals advanced by David Over, which is influential in the psychology of reasoning. Some of these results concern the “Equation” (P(if A, then C) = P(C|A)), others the de Finetti truth table, and yet others the uncertain and-to-inference task. The purpose of this chapter is to take a Birdseye view on the debate and investigate some of (...)
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  • Context-indexed Counterfactuals.Mariusz Popieluch - 2022 - Studia Semiotyczne 35 (2):89-123.
    It is commonly believed that the role of context cannot be ignored in the analysis of conditionals, and counterfactuals in particular. On truth conditional accounts involving possible worlds semantics, conditionals have been analysed as expressions of relative necessity: “If A, then B” is true at some world w if B is true at all the A-worlds deemed relevant to the evaluation of the conditional at w. A drawback of this approach is that for the evaluation of conditionals with the same (...)
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  • A Probabilistic Truth-Conditional Semantics for Indicative Conditionals.Michał Sikorski - 2022 - Semiotic Studies 35 (2):69-87.
    In my article, I present a new version of a probabilistic truth prescribing semantics for natural language indicative conditionals. The proposed truth conditions can be paraphrased as follows: an indicative conditional is true if the corresponding conditional probability is high and the antecedent is positively probabilistically relevant for the consequent or the probability of the antecedent of the conditional equals 0. In the paper, the truth conditions are defended and some of the logical properties of the proposed semantics are described.
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  • Swahili conditional constructions in embodied Frames of Reference: Modeling semantics, pragmatics, and context-sensitivity in UML mental spaces.Roderick Fish - 2020 - Dissertation, Trinity Western University
    Studies of several languages, including Swahili [swa], suggest that realis (actual, realizable) and irrealis (unlikely, counterfactual) meanings vary along a scale (e.g., 0.0–1.0). T-values (True, False) and P-values (probability) account for this pattern. However, logic cannot describe or explain (a) epistemic stances toward beliefs, (b) deontic and dynamic stances toward states-of-being and actions, and (c) context-sensitivity in conditional interpretations. (a)–(b) are deictic properties (positions, distance) of ‘embodied’ Frames of Reference (FoRs)—space-time loci in which agents perceive and from which they contextually (...)
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