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Rational Powers in ActionInstrumental Rationality and Extended Agency$
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Sergio Tenenbaum

Print publication date: 2020

Print ISBN-13: 9780198851486

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: October 2020

DOI: 10.1093/oso/9780198851486.001.0001

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Actions, Preferences, and Risk

Actions, Preferences, and Risk

(p.205) 9 Actions, Preferences, and Risk
Rational Powers in Action

Sergio Tenenbaum

Oxford University Press

Formal theories of instrumental rationality, such as orthodox decision theory, often provide a powerful account of the rationality of choice under risk. Can the extended theory of instrumental rationality (ETR) be similarly extended to contexts of risk and uncertainty? Chapter 9 argues that ETR can provide a satisfactory account of rationality in these contexts and that it can actually co-opt the resources of decision theory exactly in the cases in which the theory seems most plausible; namely, the pursuit of what I call “general means” (such as the pursuit of health or wealth). Moreover ETR plausibly renders coherent certain ubiquitous choice dispositions (such as the ones manifested in the Allais paradox) that seem incompatible with orthodox decision theory.

Keywords:   risk, uncertainty, decision theory, biases, Allais paradox

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