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Institute for Logic, Language and Computation

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14 February 2007, Logic Tea, Patrick Girard

Speaker: Patrick Girard
Title: Ceteris Paribus Clauses: Normal or Equal?
Date: Wednesday 14 February 2007
Time: 17:30-18:30
Location: Room P.017, Euclides Building, Plantage Muidergracht 24, Amsterdam

Patrick Girard, who's been visiting us from Stanford, will give a talk about the following:

Ceteris paribus clauses ("everything else being equal") occur in many disciplines, especially in special sciences such as folk psychology, where some argue that they are indispensable. Philosophers like Nancy Cartwright go so far as to claim that even pure sciences have at best ceteris paribus laws, and thus that they lie. In most cases though, ceteris paribus clauses stand for normal conditions of evaluation and account for possible defeaters of laws. On the basis of this standpoint, it seems that "everything else being normal" would be a better rendering. I will disambiguate two readings of ceteris paribus, which I call the equality and the normality reading, using tools of logic. I will look at various occurrences of both readings in economics, philosophy and game theory, and I will outline a formalism of the equality reading in modal logic, which also has independent mathematical interests.

All attendees are warmly invited to have a (free!) drink after the talk at the nearby pub Eik and Linde.

Please note that this newsitem has been archived, and may contain outdated information or links.