Good decisions, good causes: Optimality as a constraint on attribution of causal responsibility

Samuel G. B. Johnson, Lance J. Rips

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference contribution

39 Downloads (Pure)

Abstract

How do we assign causal responsibility for others’ decisions? The present experiments examine the possibility that an optimality constraint is used in these attributions, with agents considered less responsible for outcomes when the decisions that led to those outcomes were suboptimal. Our first two experiments investigate scenarios in which agents are choosing among multiple options, varying the efficacy of the forsaken alternatives to examine the role of optimality in attributing responsibility. Experiment 3 tests whether optimality considerations also play a role in attribution of causality more generally. Taken together, these studies indicate that optimality constraints are used in lay decision theory and in causal judgment.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publication35th Annual Meeting of the Cognitive Science Society
Subtitle of host publicationCooperative Minds: Social Interaction and Group Dynamics
EditorsM. Knauff
Place of PublicationAustin, Texas, USA
PublisherCognitive Science Society
Pages2662-2667
ISBN (Print)9781629930817
Publication statusPublished - 2013
EventCogSci 2013: The 35th Annual Meeting of the Cognitive Science Society - Berlin, Germany
Duration: 30 Jul 20132 Aug 2013

Conference

ConferenceCogSci 2013: The 35th Annual Meeting of the Cognitive Science Society
CountryGermany
CityBerlin
Period30/07/132/08/13

Fingerprint Dive into the research topics of 'Good decisions, good causes: Optimality as a constraint on attribution of causal responsibility'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

  • Cite this

    Johnson, S. G. B., & Rips, L. J. (2013). Good decisions, good causes: Optimality as a constraint on attribution of causal responsibility. In M. Knauff (Ed.), 35th Annual Meeting of the Cognitive Science Society: Cooperative Minds: Social Interaction and Group Dynamics (pp. 2662-2667). Cognitive Science Society. http://csjarchive.cogsci.rpi.edu/proceedings/2013/papers/0480/