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Published June 2015 | public
Journal Article Open

Graded Causation and Defaults


Recent work in psychology and experimental philosophy has shown that judgments of actual causation are often influenced by consideration of defaults, typicality, and normality. A number of philosophers and computer scientists have also suggested that an appeal to such factors can help deal with problems facing existing accounts of actual causation. This article develops a flexible formal framework for incorporating defaults, typicality, and normality into an account of actual causation. The resulting account takes actual causation to be both graded and comparative. We then show how our account would handle a number of standard cases.

Additional Information

© The Author 2014. Published by Oxford University Press on behalf of British Society for the Philosophy of Science. First published online: April 9, 2014. For helpful comments and discussion, we would like to thank Luke Glynn, Franz Huber, Josh Knobe, Jonathan Livengood, Laurie Paul, Jim Woodward, two anonymous referees, members of the McDonnell Causal Learning Collaborative, and audience members at the Association of Symbolic Logic meeting (Chicago 2010), the Society for Exact Philosophy (Kansas City 2010), the Formal Epistemology Festival (Toronto 2010), the Workshop on Actual Causation (Konstanz 2010), Ohio University, California Institute of Technology, Rutgers University, and the University of California at San Diego. Supported in part by NSF grants IIS-0812045 and IIS-0911036, AFOSR grants FA9550-08-1-0438 and FA9550-05-1-0055, and ARO grant W911NF-09-1-0281.

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Submitted - 1309.1226v1.pdf


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August 20, 2023
August 20, 2023