Models, Inference, and Decisions
What We Do
Recent research in cognitive and behavioral sciences is increasingly illuminating the basic mechanisms of human reasoning and cognition, as well as their limitations and systematic deviations from normative theories of rational inference and decision-making. It also raises interesting questions concerning the foundations and methods of different scientific disciplines, and the analysis of scientific reasoning in general.
This research line puts together theoretical and formal models of inference and decision-making with empirical approaches to the study of human reasoning and cognition. The aim is twofold: to better understand, and possibly improve, how people reason and make choices in different contexts, both in ordinary life and in science; and to clarify and strengthen the methodology and foundations of cognitive, behavioral, and social sciences.
Topics we work, or plan to work, on include:
Formal epistemology and philosophy of science:
Bayesian confirmation theory, truthlikeness theory, cognitive decision theory.
Philosophy of cognitive, behavioral, and social sciences, including neuroscience, (behavioral) economics, medicine, forensic science, statistics, machine learning, history, textual criticism, etc.
Philosophical issues in the foundations, epistemology, and the methodology of science: e.g., reverse inference, abduction, analogy, simplicity, replicability, explainability, etc.
Models of reasoning, inference and decision-making:
Heuristics and biases, ecological rationality, nudge theory.
Experts, science, and society: boosting scientific literacy, managing false and misleading information, assessing expert advice
Legal epistemology and cognitive biases in legal reasoning
Rationality as truth approximation
PRIN project From models to decisions (2019-2021)
Reasoning, uncertainty, and expert judgment
NUTS (Nudge Unit Toscana per la Salute), joint IMT - ARS Toscana initiative
Who We Are
Guests and past members
What We Publish
Approaching deterministic and probabilistic truth: a unified accountCevolani, G.; Festa, R.Synthese, 2021. DOI: 10.1007/s11229-021-03298-y
A Millian Look at the Logic of Clinical TrialsFesta, R.; Cevolani, G.; Tambolo, L.Uncertainty in Pharmacology, 2020. DOI: 10.1007/978-3-030-29179-2_9
Fallibilism, verisimilitude, and the Preface ParadoxCevolani, G.Erkenntnis, 2017. DOI: 10.1007/s10670-016-9811-0
D. Coraci - Reverse Inference and Bayesian Confirmation in Cognitive Neuroscience; Symposium: From Brain Structures to Cognitive Functions: Philosophical and Neuroscientific Perspectives on Reverse Inference, European Society for Philophy and Physchology (ESPP) Conference 2021, Leipzig (Germany), 2021
A. Demichelis - Vaccine Hesitancy and Trust: Lessons from the COVID-19 Pandemic. SAS Conference 2021 - Trust in Science. High Performance Computing Center, Stuttgart. 2021
C. Colombo, M. Fanghella, F. Guala, C. Sinigaglia, The Role of Strategic Thinking and Motor Information in Interpersonal Coordination, SIPF, Conference, Palermo, 2021
F. Panizza, The contribution of fact-checking tips and monetary incentives to the recognition of online scientific disinformation. INEM 2021 Conference, Arizona State University, 2021.
E. Peruzzi, G. Cevolani - Defending De-Idealization in Economic Modeling: a Case Study. INEM 2021 Conference, Arizona State University, 2021.
G. Cevolani, D. Coraci - Reverse Inference, Bayesian Confirmation, and the Neuroscience of Moral Reasoning’ . 2020 International Neuroethics Society Conference, online, October 22-23 2020.