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On de Finetti's instrumental philosophy of probability

Berkovitz, Joseph (2019) On de Finetti's instrumental philosophy of probability. [Preprint]

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Abstract

De Finetti is one of the founding fathers of the subjective school of probability. He held that probabilities are subjective, coherent degrees of expectation, and he argued that none of the objective interpretations of probability make sense. While his theory has been influential in science and philosophy, it has encountered various objections. I argue that these objections overlook central aspects of de Finetti’s philosophy of probability and are largely unfounded. I propose a new interpretation of de Finetti’s theory that highlights these aspects and explains how they are an integral part of de Finetti’s instrumentalist philosophy of probability. I conclude by drawing an analogy between misconceptions about de Finetti’s philosophy of probability and common misconceptions about instrumentalism.


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Item Type: Preprint
Creators:
CreatorsEmailORCID
Berkovitz, JosephJoseph.berkovitz@utoronto.ca
Keywords: De Finetti, subjective probability, instrumentalism, pragmatism, degrees of expectation, degrees of belief, coherence, consistency, verifiability, operational definition, epistemic justification, pragmatic justification, accuracy of degrees of belief, imprecise probabilities
Subjects: General Issues > Decision Theory
General Issues > Operationalism/Instrumentalism
Specific Sciences > Probability/Statistics
Depositing User: Dr Joseph Berkovitz
Date Deposited: 18 Feb 2019 14:33
Last Modified: 18 Feb 2019 14:33
Item ID: 15746
Subjects: General Issues > Decision Theory
General Issues > Operationalism/Instrumentalism
Specific Sciences > Probability/Statistics
Date: 15 February 2019
URI: https://philsci-archive-dev.library.pitt.edu/id/eprint/15746

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