Thursday, June 11, 2015

Framed! Philosophers are no better at this than the rest of us

Interesting that they found this result.  I guess I'm surprised, at least a little.  Although "Fiery Cushman" is an excellent name, I have to admit.

Philosophers’ biased judgments persist despite training, expertise and reflection 

Eric Schwitzgebel & Fiery Cushman
Cognition, August 2015, Pages 127–137

Abstract: We examined the effects of framing and order of presentation on professional philosophers’ judgments about a moral puzzle case (the “trolley problem”) and a version of the Tversky & Kahneman “Asian disease” scenario. Professional philosophers exhibited substantial framing effects and order effects, and were no less subject to such effects than was a comparison group of non-philosopher academic participants. Framing and order effects were not reduced by a forced delay during which participants were encouraged to consider “different variants of the scenario or different ways of describing the case”. Nor were framing and order effects lower among participants reporting familiarity with the trolley problem or with loss-aversion framing effects, nor among those reporting having had a stable opinion on the issues before participating in the experiment, nor among those reporting expertise on the very issues in question. Thus, for these scenario types, neither framing effects nor order effects appear to be reduced even by high levels of academic expertise.

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