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Savage's Theorem Under Changing Awareness

Dietrich, Franz (2016): Savage's Theorem Under Changing Awareness.

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This paper proposes a simple unified framework of changing awareness, addressing both outcome and (nature) state awareness, and both how fine and how exhaustive the awareness is. Six axioms characterize an (essentially unique) expected-utility representation of preferences, in which utilities and probabilities are revised systematically under changes in awareness. Revision is governed by three well-defined rules: (R1) certain utilities are transformed affinely, (R2) certain probabilities are transformed proportionally, and (R3) certain (`objective') probabilities are preserved. Rule R2 parallels Karni and Viero's (2013) 'reverse Bayesianism' and Ahn and Ergin's (2010) 'partition-dependence'. Savage's (1954) theorem emerges in the special case of fixed awareness. The theorem draws mathematically on Kopylov (2007), Niiniluoto (1972) and Wakker (1981).

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