Cindy Phillips
University of Maryland
The Normativity of Decision Procedures

We use decision procedures all the time to settle disputes about what to do or to decide between different courses of actions (e.g., flipping a coin to settle a tie). But why should we accept the outcome of a decision-procedure as a reason for acting?

In this paper, I give an account of the role that decision-procedures play in our practical reasoning. I argue that they function as (what Joseph Raz calls) protected reasons for acting: a reason to act on the outcome of the decision-procedure and a reason not to act on any conflicting reasons. I argue that we must treat the outcome of a decision-procedure as a protected reason for acting or else we end up in a suboptimal state.

Wednesday, February 24, 2016

Skinner 1115