03:00 PM to 04:15 PM TR
Robinson Hall B368
Section Information for Spring 2020
Fulfills a requirement for the PPE concentration; or, fulfills the requirement for a course in the analytic tradition for the philosophy major.
This course investigates rational decision making in individual, competitive, and cooperative contexts. We begin by examining how a single agent ought to act in a choice situation given her knowledge about the world and her particular risk profile. We will examine various problems for decision theory such as the Allais Paradox, Newcomb’s Problem, and the Ellsberg Paradox. We then move on to game theory and explore different kinds of competitive and cooperative strategic interactions between agents, define different kinds of solutions (or equilibria) of these games, and apply game theory to the study of morality and convention.
The course introduces students to decision and game theoretic models, applies these models to philosophical problems, and investigates the assumptions behind these models. There are no prerequisites, but some familiarity with statistics, probability and elementary logic and well-developed basic math skills will contribute to student success.