Philosophy Lecture: Decision and Foreknowledge

Date, time, location

Friday, March 11, 2022
4:30 pm

King Building, 343

10 N. Professor St.
Oberlin, OH 44074

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Additional details

Free and open to the public

Dmitri Gallow will give a talk titled “Decision and Foreknowledge.”

Abstract:  My topic is how to make decisions when you possess foreknowledge of the consequences of your choice.   Many have thought that these kinds of decisions pose a distinctive and novel problem for causal decision theory (CDT). My thesis is that foreknowledge poses no new problems for CDT. Some of the purported problems are not problems. Others are problems, but they are not problems for CDT. Rather, they are problems for our theories of subjunctive supposition. Others are problems, but they are not new problems. They are old problems transposed into a new key. Nonetheless, decisions made with foreknowledge teach us important lessons about the instrumental value of our choices. Once we've appreciated these lessons, we are left with a version of CDT which faces no novel threats from foreknowledge.

J. Dmitri Gallow is a Senior Research Fellow at the Dianoia Institute of Philosophy at the Australian Catholic University. His work focuses on the metaphysics of causation and chance, the rational norms governing credence and choice, and the connections between those topics.  He received his PhD from the University of Michigan in 2014 and held positions at New York University and the University of Pittsburgh before moving to Dianoia in 2020.

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