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# Topic: Decision theory

###### In the News (Mon 19 Aug 19)

 Decision theory - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia Decision theory is an interdisciplinary area of study, related to and of interest to practitioners in mathematics, statistics, economics, philosophy, management and psychology. This is the classic subject of study of microeconomics and is rarely considered under the heading of decision theory, but such choices are often in fact part of the issues that are considered within decision theory. Other areas of decision theory are concerned with decisions that are difficult simply because of their complexity, or the complexity of the organization that has to make them. en.wikipedia.org /wiki/Decision_theory   (1490 words)

 : Decision Theory One approach to decision theory made popular by Cyert and March (he of the "garbage model of organizations") is the consideration of the organization as a coalition of individuals, in which goals are arrived at by a bargaining process and change over time. Decisions are dependent on the amount and kind of information available and the expectations of those involved. Decisions made under this approach often favor s ecurity and the status quo and are risk averse. ils.unc.edu /daniel/614/decisiontheory.html   (695 words)

 What is Game Theory? The most widely used form of decision theory argues that preferences among risky alternatives can be described by the maximization the expected value of a numerical utility function, where utility may depend on a number of things, but in situations of interest to economists often depends on money income. Probability theory is heavily used in order to represent the uncertainty of outcomes, and Bayes Law is frequently used to model the way in which new information is used to revise beliefs. Decision theory is often used in the form of decision analysis, which shows how best to acquire information before making a decision. levine.sscnet.ucla.edu /general/whatis.htm   (1118 words)

 Inference.Plan Just as theory evaluation can be viewed as inference to the best explanation, with the acceptability of hypotheses determined by a judgment of explanatory coherence, so decision making can be viewed as inference to the best plan, with the desirability of actions and goals determined by a judgment of what we call deliberative coherence. Decisions are made on the basis of an assessment of the overall coherence of a set of actions and goals. In fact, decisions are not exclusively goal-determined, since they will depend in part on judgements of fact as allowed in principle 5 of TDC; this is captured in DECO by the need for input statements that represent empirical estimates of what facilitates what. cogsci.uwaterloo.ca /Articles/Pages/Inference.Plan.html   (5724 words)

 Decision Theory When faced with an important decision in our lives, in contrast, we are often "on our own" to think through what we might do and what are the probable consequences of the behaviors we might choose. We must also counter the misconception that decision making is important simply because of the vastness of the choices with which we as individuals and as α species are faced today in the modern world. Such adaptation is both a blessing (as when an individual in the worst prison camp can experience near ecstasy over eating α single crust of bread or cultivating α single weed) and α curse (as when people who appear to "have it made" adapt to their riches and find themselves on an unsatisfying "hedonic treadmill"). www.wordtrade.com /science/psychology/decisiontheory.htm   (1292 words)

 Paul Weirich - Realistic Decision Theory: Rules for Nonideal Agents in Nonideal Circumstances - Reviewed by Adam ... He distinguishes between choices and decisions: a choice is a mental act, of selection of an act from a list of possibilities, while a decision is the process that led to that act. Facing a decision such an agent should consider her body of beliefs and her preliminary evaluations of outcomes, check the way they were acquired, correct those that she is capable of correcting, and then use a full maximization procedure. First, the decision costs might be structured in such a way that the process of maximizing expected utility, even leaving uncorrected deviations from it that would be expensive to fix, would give worse results than some other procedure. ndpr.nd.edu /review.cfm?id=3541   (1558 words)

 A Measurement Decision Theory Tutorial Isolated elements of decision theory have appeared sporadically in the measurement literature. Key articles in the mastery testing literature of the 1970s employed decision theory (Hambleton and Novick, 1973; Huynh, 1976; van der Linden and Mellenbergh, 1977) and should be re-examined in light of today’s measurement problems. Most of the research to date has applied decision theory to testlets or test batteries or as a supplement to item response theory and specific latent class models. edres.org /mdt   (643 words)

 Decision Theory and Selecting a Spouse The value image consists of the decision maker's principles; what's right or wrong, any organizational rules or principles that must be followed, etc. The second image is the trajectory image, the goals that the decision maker wants to achieve. Decisions can be made by screening out candidates because they don't pass a minimum level, or by doing some sort of combined comparison to rank the candidates in preference order. In theory this ought to be possible (although the inherent success rate would still be nowhere near 100%) but in practice you would have to limit the number of cues to something manageable. www.geocities.com /SouthBeach/1285/decision.html   (3446 words)

 Statistical Modeling, Causal Inference, and Social Science: Decision Theory Archives Pure maximizing (for deterministic decision trees) or pure averaging (for probability trees) are both relatively simple because the maximum of a maximum is a maximum, and the average of an average is an average. His topic was "decisions as memory" (maybe i'm getting the exact words wrong here), and the key idea was that, in the process of making a decision, a person queries his or her memory, thinking of good and bad aspects of different decision options. For example, in a decision problem of the costs and benefits of screening for cancer, the utility function is noncontroversial--years of life, with a slight adjustment for quality of life--and the relevant probabilities are estimated from the medical literature. www.stat.columbia.edu /~cook/movabletype/archives/decision_theory   (13464 words)

 GTDT 2005   (Site not responding. Last check: 2007-11-06) Game and decision theories have proved to be powerful tools with which to design autonomous agents, and to understand interactions in systems composed of many such agents. Decision theory provides a general paradigm for designing agents that can operate in complex uncertain environments, and can act rationally to maximize their preferences. We are also interested in the use of non-standard variants of decision theory (including qualitative and logical approaches), and in approaches that combine decision and game theories. www.cs.uic.edu /~piotr/gtdt05.html   (362 words)

 A Measurement Decision Theory Tutorial This is the simplest decision approach and is based solely on the conditional probabilities of the response vectors given each of the mastery states, i.e. In the binary decision case, the probability of making a wrong decision is one minus the probability of making a right decision and the probabilities of making a right decision is by definition, the posterior probabilities given in (1). The traditional decision theory sequential testing approach, minimum cost, and a new approach, information gain, which is based on entropy and comes from information theory. edres.org /mdt/home2.asp   (3476 words)

 Decision Modeling In a decision tree, a state of nature node (with probabilities and payoffs) is a lottery. It can be shown [see Howard (1977)] that if a decision maker accepts the axioms as valid, then an expected utility function exists such that the decision maker's preferences for lotteries will correspond with the utility values generated by the utility function. Ernst Zermelo is credited with game theory's first theorem (1913) by showing that a solution algorithm for chess exists (even though it is not computable in practice). groups.msn.com /DecisionModeling/utilitytheory.msnw   (912 words)

 Center for Rationality and Interactive Decision Theory The purpose of the Center is to foster research on individual rationality and interactive decision theory at both disciplinary and interdisciplinary levels. Interactive decision theory (also known as game theory) studies what happens when rational agents with different goals interact, each making its own decisions on the basis of what is best for itself, while taking into account that the others are doing the same. These ideas underlie much of economic theory, and have also had an important influence in such diverse areas as evolutionary biology, psychology, political science, computer science, law, statistics, philosophy, and the foundations of mathematics. www.ratio.huji.ac.il   (224 words)

 Decision Theory D, the "decision space." D is the set of possible actions that we (or the stakeholders we advise) could take after observing the experimental results. If the landfill is leaking and the decision is to move into assessment monitoring, no loss is incurred: this is the correct decision. The rows correspond to experimental outcomes, the columns to procedures, and the entries are decisions. www.quantdec.com /envstats/notes/class_11/decision_theory.htm   (4349 words)

 Mind Tools - Decision Theory and Decision Trees Decision trees are excellent tools for making financial or number based decisions where a lot of complex information needs to be taken into account. This decision is represented by a small square towards the left of a large piece of paper. When you have calculated the benefit of each decision, select the decision which has the largest benefit, and take that as the decision made and the value of that node. www.psychwww.com /mtsite/dectree.html   (1048 words)

 Theory of Decision Making An example of the Theory of Decision Making: If a coin is tossed the probability the coin will face up with the head is.5. He is also an internationally recognized expert in decision analysis and behavioral decision theory. The theory also assumes the person is aware of the consequences of alternatives and decisions. www.colostate.edu /Depts/Speech/rccs/theory65.htm   (922 words)

 Decision Tree Analysis - Decision Trees from Mind Tools Decision Trees are excellent tools for helping you to choose between several courses of action. As you complete a set of calculations on a node (decision square or uncertainty circle), all you need to do is to record the result. When you have calculated these decision benefits, choose the option that has the largest benefit, and take that as the decision made. www.mindtools.com /dectree.html   (1995 words)

 ORG420 Decision theory The course provides the students with an overview of normative and descriptive decision models that is highlighted from different theoretical points of departures and illustrated through theoretical analyses and empirical studies. Issues involved in learning from decisions and action taken on the basis of decisions are also a part of the course. The concept of rationality will be discussed by examining behavioral, cognitive decision theory at the individual level, where we shall emphasize preference formation, framing, cognitive limits, heuristics and biases, risk, models of choice, and learning. www.chass.utoronto.ca /~agreve/org420   (558 words)

 Categorized list of titles Moreover, alternative theories of crisis were not compared and tested in a systematic fashion. A critical examination of three "big" theories that have been used to explain why people cooperate in groups (selective incentives, reputation in dynamic games of incomplete information and a preference for cooperating) and two small mechanisms supposed to explain ethnic violence (uncertain balance of power and the impossibility of making credible promises to minorities). I want a theory of justice to give clear and concrete answers to the question "What is just?" in as many situations as possible. www.geocities.com /hmelberg/papers/list2.htm   (5474 words)

 The Gumption Memo: Decision Making Techniques Practicing full-blown, formal Decision Analysis requires a lot of probability and mathematics, but fortunately, the complete rigorous treatment of the discipline is rarely necessary. One of the main results of Decision Analysis research has been to show that a decision patched together with guesses and estimates is far better than no decision. Our decision making process should be sensitive to personal values and priorities, and similarly, should account for both short-term and long-term effects. www.gumption.org /1993/memo/smart_decisions/techniques.html   (546 words)

 [No title]   (Site not responding. Last check: 2007-11-06) Email: shighho@bgnet.bgsu.edu Description This course will focus on the application of behavioral decision theory and research to problems in industrial/organizational psychology. Be prepared to provide: (What you believe to be the most important ideas in the readings (A critical evaluation of the ideas and/or evidence (Ideas or questions that you have, based on your reflections about the article(s). Decision Criteria Jungerman, H. The two camps on rationality. www.sjdm.org /sjdm/syllabi/highhouse-managerial-jdm.doc   (1155 words)

 Bayesian Decision Theory and Machine Learning   (Site not responding. Last check: 2007-11-06) In decision theory, learning is viewed as a problem of inference, in which a prior distribution and data are used to infer a posterior distribution for parameters of interest. Machine learning problems are characterized by very high dimensional parameter spaces and by models that are not "identifiable" -- that is, it may not be possible to distinguish on the basis of available training data which of several candidate representations is the "correct" one. The learning task is viewed as acquiring a problem representation that has high utility, where utility depends both on accuracy (i.e., projected performance on problems not in the training set) and computational complexity. ite.gmu.edu /~klaskey/machine   (199 words)

 Decision Theory For example, if the decision is to carry an umbrella or not, the return (get wet or not) depends on what action nature takes. After this decision is made, a state of nature occurs. The decision will depend on the decision maker's belief concerning what nature will do, that is, which state of nature will occur. mat.gsia.cmu.edu /QUANT/NOTES/chap9/node2.html   (331 words)

 Decision Theory Draw both the payoff table and the decision tree. Suppose nature acts on your decision and changes the probability of rain. For each state of nature it's the best payoff minus the payoff for the decision you made. www.calstatela.edu /faculty/hwarren/a503/decision.htm   (433 words)

 Decision Theory and Adaptive Systems - Home The Decision Theory and Adaptive Systems Group (DTAS) is focused on extending the flexibility and responsiveness of operating systems, databases, information systems, and user interfaces. The group is focused on investigating the use of probability and utility theory to enhance computer applications and platforms. We are exploring the use of flexible computational methods and decision theory to identify bottlenecks, and to optimize the functionality of operating systems and applications. www.research.microsoft.com /research/dtg   (648 words)

 Philosophy Department - David Schmidtz Decision Theory   (Site not responding. Last check: 2007-11-06) This course provides a basic survey of central puzzles in the fields of decision theory, game theory, rational choice theory, and social choice theory. We also look at famous results in experimental psychology that seem to say we are not as rational as we think. As I said, it is somewhat technical, but it does not presume any previous background in decision and game theory. phil.web.arizona.edu /faculty/extra/dschmidtz/dschmidtz_dt.htm   (134 words)

 decision theory So I've talked to Itzhak Gilboa here at Tel Aviv University, one of the foremost decision theorists alive today, and he gave me many great references on causal decision theory, including the work of Bryan Skyrms and David Lewis. To be excruciatingly plain, James M. Joyce, the undistinguished author of _The Foundations of Causal Decision Theory_ is not the same James Joyce who wrote ULYSSES. I can empathize with his disappointment in discovering, contrary to reasonable expectation, that _The Foundations of Casual Decision Theory_ is not a sequel to _Ulysses_. homepage.mac.com /andreaspape/zap/C213074898   (472 words)

 Decision Theory in Expert Systems and Artificial Intelligence   (Site not responding. Last check: 2007-11-06) Despite their different perspectives, artificial intelligence (AI) and the disciplines of decision science have common roots and strive for similar goals. Recent analyses of the restrictions of several traditional AI reasoning techniques, coupled with the development of more tractable and expressive decision-theoretic representation and inference strategies, has stimulated renewed interest in decision theory and decision analysis. Finally, we discuss issues that have not been studied in detail within the expert systems setting, yet are crucial for developing theoretical methods and computational architectures for automated reasoners. research.microsoft.com /~horvitz/dt.htm   (195 words)

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