This paper presents an axiomatic framework for qualitative decision under uncertainty in a finite setting. The corresponding utility is expressed by a sup-min expression, called Sugeno (or fuzzy) integral. Technically speaking, Sugeno integral is a median, which is indeed a qualitative counterpart to the averaging operation underlying expected utility. The axiomatic justification of Sugeno integral-based utility is expressed in terms of preference between acts as in Savage decision theory. Pessimistic and optimistic qualitative utilities, based on necessity and possibility measures, previously introduced by two of the authors, can be retrieved in this setting by adding appropriate axioms.
Our main result is a constructive representation theorem in the spirit of Savage's result for expected utility maximization, which uses two choice axioms to characterize the maxapnin criterion. These axioms characterize agent behaviors that can be modeled compactly using the maxcirnin model, and, with some reservations, indicate that rnaxionin is a reasonable decision criterion.
This paper uses decision-theoretic principles to obtain new insights into the assessment and updating of probabilities. First, a new foundation of Bayesianism is given. It does not require infinite atomless uncertainties as did Savage s classical result, AND can therefore be applied TO ANY finite Bayesian network.It neither requires linear utility AS did de Finetti s classical result, AND r ntherefore allows FOR the empirically AND normatively desirable risk r naversion.Finally, BY identifying AND fixing utility IN an elementary r nmanner, our result can readily be applied TO identify methods OF r nprobability updating.Thus, a decision - theoretic foundation IS given r nto the computationally efficient method OF inductive reasoning r ndeveloped BY Rudolf Carnap.Finally, recent empirical findings ON r nprobability assessments are discussed.It leads TO suggestions FOR r ncorrecting biases IN probability assessments, AND FOR an alternative r nto the Dempster - Shafer belief functions that avoids the reduction TO r ndegeneracy after multiple updatings.r n
This paper proposes a decision theory for a symbolic generalization of probability theory (SP). Darwiche and Ginsberg [2,3] proposed SP to relax the requirement of using numbers for uncertainty while preserving desirable patterns of Bayesian reasoning. SP represents uncertainty by symbolic supports that are ordered partially rather than completely as in the case of standard probability. We show that a preference relation on acts that satisfies a number of intuitive postulates is represented by a utility function whose domain is a set of pairs of supports. We argue that a subjective interpretation is as useful and appropriate for SP as it is for numerical probability. It is useful because the subjective interpretation provides a basis for uncertainty elicitation. It is appropriate because we can provide a decision theory that explains how preference on acts is based on support comparison.
In this article, we address the question of how non-knowledge about future events that influence economic agents' decisions in choice settings has been formally represented in economic theory up to date. To position our discussion within the ongoing debate on uncertainty, we provide a brief review of historical developments in economic theory and decision theory on the description of economic agents' choice behaviour under conditions of uncertainty, understood as either (i) ambiguity, or (ii) unawareness. Accordingly, we identify and discuss two approaches to the formalisation of non-knowledge: one based on decision-making in the context of a state space representing the exogenous world, as in Savage's axiomatisation and some successor concepts (ambiguity as situations with unknown probabilities), and one based on decision-making over a set of menus of potential future opportunities, providing the possibility of derivation of agents' subjective state spaces (unawareness as situation with imperfect subjective knowledge of all future events possible). We also discuss impeding challenges of the formalisation of non-knowledge.