Seminar Series in Analytic Philosophy 2020-21, Session 23

Varieties of Risk and Recklessness
Philip Ebert (University of Stirling)

07 May 2021, 16:00 (Lisbon Time – GMT+1) | Sala Mattos Romão (Departamento de Filosofia) & on Zoom

Abstract: A number of philosophers have recently argued that danger or risk judgments do not track underlying probabilities of a bad outcome and have argued for non-probabilistic notions of risk or danger (Williamson 2009, Pritchard 2016, Ebert, Smith & Durbach 2020). However, the intuitive examples used so far to motivate non-probabilistic notions were often found unconvincing. In this talk, I first present some new experimental work on intuitive risk/danger and recklessness judgements. The data raises a challenge for the probabilistic notion and I discuss different ways in which these intuitive judgments could be explained within a probabilistic framework. In the second part of the talk, I will outline and explain two recently defended non-probabilistic notions: the modal and the normic notion of risk and show how they could explain the relevant data and assess in what way they do better (or worse) than the probabilistic notion of risk. In the last part of the talk, I discuss the notion of recklessness and show how a normic notion of risk can underwrite and motivate a distinctive non-probabilistic notion of recklessness that may do well to explain some of our intuitive judgements about recklessness.

Free Attendance, but preregistration required: