PhilSci Archive

Are There Lewis Conventions?

Guala, Francesco (2008) Are There Lewis Conventions? [Preprint]

Download (106Kb) | Preview


    David Lewis famously proposed to model conventions as solutions to coordination games, where equilibrium selection is driven by precedence, or the history of play. A characteristic feature of Lewis Conventions is that they are intrinsically nonnormative. Some philosophers have argued that for this reason they miss a crucial aspect of our folk notion of convention. It is doubtful however that Lewis was merely analysing a folk concept. I illustrate how his theory can (and must) be assessed using empirical data, and argue that it does indeed miss some important aspects of real-world conventions. I conclude that whether Lewis Conventions exist or not depends on how closely they approximate real-world behaviour, and whether we have any alternative theory that does a better job at explaining the phenomena.

    Export/Citation:EndNote | BibTeX | Dublin Core | ASCII/Text Citation (Chicago) | HTML Citation | OpenURL
    Social Networking:

    Item Type: Preprint
    Keywords: Norms, COnventions, Experiments, Coordination
    Subjects: Specific Sciences > Economics
    Depositing User: Francesco Guala
    Date Deposited: 09 Jun 2010
    Last Modified: 07 Oct 2010 11:19
    Item ID: 5398

    Actions (login required)

    View Item

    Document Downloads