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Nick Byrd
Stevens Institute of Technology
  1.  39
    Not All Who Ponder Count Costs: Arithmetic Reflection Predicts Utilitarian Tendencies, but Logical Reflection Predicts Both Deontological and Utilitarian Tendencies.Nick Byrd & Paul Conway - 2019 - Cognition 192 (103995).
    Conventional sacrificial moral dilemmas propose directly causing some harm to prevent greater harm. Theory suggests that accepting such actions (consistent with utilitarian philosophy) involves more reflective reasoning than rejecting such actions (consistent with deontological philosophy). However, past findings do not always replicate, confound different kinds of reflection, and employ conventional sacrificial dilemmas that treat utilitarian and deontological considerations as opposite. In two studies, we examined whether past findings would replicate when employing process dissociation to assess deontological and utilitarian inclinations independently. (...)
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  2. What We Can (and Can’T) Infer About Implicit Bias From Debiasing Experiments.Nick Byrd - 2019 - Synthese (2):1-29.
    The received view of implicit bias holds that it is associative and unreflective. Recently, the received view has been challenged. Some argue that implicit bias is not predicated on “any” associative process, but it is unreflective. These arguments rely, in part, on debiasing experiments. They proceed as follows. If implicit bias is associative and unreflective, then certain experimental manipulations cannot change implicitly biased behavior. However, these manipulations can change such behavior. So, implicit bias is not associative and unreflective. This paper (...)
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  3. Bounded Reflectivism and Epistemic Identity.Nick Byrd - 2022 - Metaphilosophy 53 (1).
    Reflectivists consider reflective reasoning crucial for good judgment and action. Anti-reflectivists deny that reflection delivers what reflectivists seek. Alas, the evidence is mixed. So, does reflection confer normative value or not? This paper argues for a middle way: reflection can confer normative value, but its ability to do this is bound by such factors as what we might call epistemic identity: an identity that involves particular beliefs—for example, religious and political identities. We may reflectively defend our identities’ beliefs rather than (...)
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  4.  83
    Online Conferences: Some History, Methods, and Benefits.Nick Byrd - 2021 - In Right Research: Modelling Sustainable Research Practices in the Anthropocene. United Kingdom: Open Book Publishers. pp. 435–462.
    Philosophers have probably been organizing conferences since at least the time of Plato’s academy (Barnes, 1998). More recently, philosophers have brought some of their conferences online (e.g., Brown, 2009; Buckner, Byrd, Rushing, & Schwenkler, 2017; Calzavarini & Viola, 2018; Nadelhoffer, 2006). However, the adoption of online conferences is limited. One might wonder if scholars prefer traditional conferences for their ability to provide goods that online conferences cannot. While this may be true, online conferences outshine traditional conferences in various ways, and (...)
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  5. Reflective Reasoning & Philosophy.Nick Byrd - 2021 - Philosophy Compass 16 (11):e12786.
    Philosophy is a reflective activity. So perhaps it is unsurprising that many philosophers have claimed that reflection plays an important role in shaping and even improving our philosophical thinking. This hypothesis seems plausible given that training in philosophy has correlated with better performance on tests of reflection and reflective reasoning has correlated with demonstrably better judgments in a variety of domains. This article reviews the hypothesized roles of reflection in philosophical thinking as well as the empirical evidence for these roles. (...)
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  6.  28
    Your Health Vs. My Liberty: Philosophical Beliefs Dominated Reflection and Identifiable Victim Effects When Predicting Public Health Recommendation Compliance During the COVID-19 Pandemic.Nick Byrd & Michał Białek - 2021 - Cognition 104649.
    In response to crises, people sometimes prioritize fewer specific identifiable victims over many unspecified statistical victims. How other factors can explain this bias remains unclear. So two experiments investigated how complying with public health recommendations during the COVID19 pandemic depended on victim portrayal, reflection, and philosophical beliefs (Total N = 998). Only one experiment found that messaging about individual victims increased compliance compared to messaging about statistical victims—i.e., "flatten the curve" graphs—an effect that was undetected after controlling for other factors. (...)
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  7. Intuitive And Reflective Responses In Philosophy.Nick Byrd - 2014 - Dissertation, University of Colorado
    Cognitive scientists have revealed systematic errors in human reasoning. There is disagreement about what these errors indicate about human rationality, but one upshot seems clear: human reasoning does not seem to fit traditional views of human rationality. This concern about rationality has made its way through various fields and has recently caught the attention of philosophers. The concern is that if philosophers are prone to systematic errors in reasoning, then the integrity of philosophy would be threatened. In this paper, I (...)
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  8. One: But Not the Same.John Schwenkler, Nick Byrd, Enoch Lambert & Matthew Taylor - 2021 - Philosophical Studies.
    Ordinary judgments about personal identity are complicated by the fact that phrases like “same person” and “different person” have multiple uses in ordinary English. This complication calls into question the significance of recent experimental work on this topic. For example, Tobia (2015) found that judgments of personal identity were significantly affected by whether the moral change described in a vignette was for the better or for the worse, while Strohminger and Nichols (2014) found that loss of moral conscience had more (...)
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  9.  39
    On Second Thought, Libet-Style Unreflective Intentions May Be Compatible With Free Will.Nick Byrd - 2021 - Logoi 39 (23):17-28.
    Some have argued that our sense of free will is an illusion. And some base this free will skepticism on claims about when we become consciously aware of our intentions. Evidence suggests that unreflective intentions form before we are conscious of them. And that is supposed to challenge our sense of free will. This inference from unreflective intention to free will skepticism may seem intuitive at first. However, upon reflection, this argument seems to entail a magical view of free will. (...)
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  10. Causal Network Accounts Of Ill-Being: Depression & Digital Well-Being.Nick Byrd - 2020 - In Christopher Burr & Luciano Floridi (eds.), Ethics of Digital Well-being: A Multidisciplinary Approach. Springer International Publishing. pp. 221-245.
    Depression is a common and devastating instance of ill-being which deserves an account. Moreover, the ill-being of depression is impacted by digital technology: some uses of digital technology increase such ill-being while other uses of digital technology increase well-being. So a good account of ill-being would explicate the antecedents of depressive symptoms and their relief, digitally and otherwise. This paper borrows a causal network account of well-being and applies it to ill-being, particularly depression. Causal networks are found to provide a (...)
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