Monday 8 May, 4.30 pm, Sala Enzo Paci (via Festa del Perdono, 7)

Neil Sinhababu (Singapore): Experientialism about Moral Concepts

I present an experientialist account of moral concepts, on which moral judgments are beliefs about when moral feelings represent objective facts. For example, guilt represents wrong actions while admiration represents virtuous character. Experientialism is suggested by an elegant empirical model of moral psychology. It fits into a cognitivist, externalist, and Humean picture of moral judgment, providing an alternative to views that analyze moral concepts in terms of reasons. It also provides new support for ethical hedonism.


Tuesday 9 May, 2.30 pm, Sala Enzo Paci (via Festa del Perdono, 7)

Gregory Wheeler (Frankfurt School of Finance & Management):
"Mispriced gambles: What peers learn when they disagree"

One criticism to the theory of imprecise probabilities (IP) is that there is no compelling example which mandates choosing an imprecise probability model over a precise probability one, but instead the appeal of the theory rests on intuitions about "Knighten" uncertainty that are inconclusive. This talk answers this criticism with a problem from the peer disagreement literature.  The Preservation of Irrelevant Evidence (PIE) Principle maintains that a resolution strategy to peer disagreements should be able to preserve unanimous judgments of evidential irrelevance among the peers.  It is well-known that no standard Bayesian resolution strategy satisfies the PIE Principle, and some -- such as Carl Wagner -- have argued so much the worse for PIE.  In this paper we respond by giving a loss aversion argument in support of PIE and against Bayes.  The upshot is that, given the choice between IP and Bayes, if you want PIE, you must renounce Bayes and choose IP.

Tuesday 16 May, 2.30 PM, Biblioteca di Politeia (via Festa del Perdono, 7)

Riccardo Viale (University of Milano-Bicocca): 'Embodied ecological rationality'

Ecological Rationality (introduced by the group of Gigerenzer, Hertwig, Todd  and colleagues at Max Planck Institute  for Human Development in Berlin) is the well known attempt to develop empirically the prescriptive side of bounded rationality model  in heuristic decision making under conditions of uncertainty. Contrary to the main stream of behavioral economics (whose main interest is the comparison of human decision making with normative rational models) its focus is on the structure of the environment and on the relative successful adaptive behaviour. Few neurocognitive studies have been realized to explain the neural mechanism of the adaptive  success of heuristic decision making. My hypothesis is that the Embodied Cognition approach and in particular the models of embodied perception and emotion might give some cues for understanding the intuitive features of  Recognition Based and One-Reason Based heuristics in particular the  Take-the-First and Take-the-Best heuristics.

Wednesday May 31 - Thursday June 1, 2017 (SALA ENZO PACI, Via Festa del Perdono, 7)


The scientific debate of individual cognition and its relation to (mental) action and society has a long tradition. More recently, philosophers and cognitive scientists have approached the peculiarities of cognition in groups, addressing questions like: What is ‘cognition in groups’? Is there something like a ‘group mind’ or ‘socially extended mind’? What is special about being engaged in mental actions in a group together with other agents opposed to being engaged in the same kinds of action individually? What does mental action and mental agency come to in groups? What is the interrelation between group cognition and social ontology? To which extent does the existence of institutions and social facts depend on cognition in groups? This workshop aims at continuing the debate by addressing questions like these and shedding new light on ‘cognition in groups’ from various angels.


  • Laura Candiotto (University of Edinburgh)
  • Natalia Danilkina (University of Groningen)
  • Angelica Kaufmann (University of Göttingen)
  • Kourken Michaelian (University of Dunedin)
  • Christoph Michel (University of Regensburg)
  • Giulia Piredda (IUSS Center for Neurocognition, Epistemology and Theoretical Syntax in Pavia)
  • Alejandro Rosas (National University of Columbia)
  • David Strohmaier (University of Sheffield)
  • Giuliano Torrengo (University of Milan)
  • Tillmann Vierkant (University of Edinburgh)

For information about the full program and abstracts, please use the link "workshops" above.

Friday 16 June, 14.30-16.00 (SALA ENZO PACI, Via Festa del Perdono, 7)

Jean Baccelli (Munich Centre for Mathematical Philosophy), "On Decision-Making with Moral Hazard"

Assume that you can observe the betting behavior of a given decision-maker and that in so doing, your goal is to identify the beliefs which he holds about the likelihood of the events on which he is betting. Assume further that, by some actions which you cannot observe, the decision-maker can influence the intrinsic likelihood of these events. This raises a distinctive obstacle to the identification of beliefs, which is best-known as the “problem of moral hazard”. In my presentation, I will investigate the problem of moral hazard in the canonical decision-theoretic framework of Savage. I will find myself fighting on two fronts. On the one hand, many (e.g. most contributors to so-called “causal decision theory”) deny that it makes any sense to investigate moral hazard in Savage's framework. I will show that it makes perfect sense, and that a simple form of moral hazard even proves closely related to one of the most well-known models in decision theory, i.e. the so-called “max-min expected utility” model. On the other hand, some (namely, the rare decision theorists that have previously investigated moral hazard in non-Savagian frameworks) claim that moral hazard eschews the identification issues raised by so-called “state-dependent utility”. State-dependent utility describes the fact that the preferences of a decision-maker can vary with the events on which he is betting, in ways unrelated to, but impeding the identification of, his beliefs about the respective likelihoods of these events. I will show that, in Savage's framework, moral hazard does not eschew the identification issues raised by state-dependent utility, and that major qualifications must be added to the identification results previously presented in non-Savagian frameworks.