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Salience, inductive reasoning and the emergence of conventions

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  • Sugden, Robert

Abstract

This paper develops Lewis's theory of conventions to show that the spontaneous emergence of conventions depends on shared conceptions of salience. It offers a reconstruction of a mode of reasoning that is compatible with the emergence of conventions, and argues that such reasoning is pragmatically rational. This is a form of non-Bayesian inductive reasoning in which an individual's private and subjective conceptions of salience can influence the inferences she makes. This mode of reasoning is then shown to be pragmatically rational in a more general sense, relevant to problems of induction discussed in the philosophy of science.

Suggested Citation

  • Sugden, Robert, 2011. "Salience, inductive reasoning and the emergence of conventions," Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization, Elsevier, vol. 79(1), pages 35-47.
  • Handle: RePEc:eee:jeborg:v:79:y:2011:i:1:p:35-47 DOI: 10.1016/j.jebo.2011.01.026
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    5. Nicholas Bardsley & Judith Mehta & Chris Starmer & Robert Sugden, 2010. "Explaining Focal Points: Cognitive Hierarchy Theory "versus" Team Reasoning," Economic Journal, Royal Economic Society, vol. 120(543), pages 40-79, March.
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    12. Andrew Schotter & Barry Sopher, 2003. "Social Learning and Coordination Conventions in Intergenerational Games: An Experimental Study," Journal of Political Economy, University of Chicago Press, vol. 111(3), pages 498-529, June.
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    14. Boyer, Robert & Orlean, Andre, 1992. "How Do Conventions Evolve?," Journal of Evolutionary Economics, Springer, vol. 2(3), pages 165-177, October.
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    Cited by:

    1. Robert Sugden, 2016. "Ontology, Methodological Individualism, and the Foundations of the Social Sciences," Journal of Economic Literature, American Economic Association, vol. 54(4), pages 1377-1389, December.
    2. Brousseau, Eric & Garrouste, Pierre & Raynaud, Emmanuel, 2011. "Institutional changes: Alternative theories and consequences for institutional design," Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization, Elsevier, vol. 79(1-2), pages 3-19, June.
    3. Marco Stimolo, 2012. "Individual autonomy in evolutionary game theory: defending Sugden against Ross’s accusation of eliminativism," International Review of Economics, Springer;Happiness Economics and Interpersonal Relations (HEIRS), vol. 59(1), pages 67-80, March.
    4. Alberti, Federica & Sugden, Robert & Tsutsui, Kei, 2012. "Salience as an emergent property," Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization, Elsevier, vol. 82(2), pages 379-394.
    5. repec:bpj:maneco:v:4:y:2017:i:1:p:24:n:5 is not listed on IDEAS
    6. Pelle Hansen & David Rojo Arjona, 2011. "Prune or cut down: salience and Sugden’s The Economics of Rights, Co-operation and Welfare," International Review of Economics, Springer;Happiness Economics and Interpersonal Relations (HEIRS), vol. 58(1), pages 53-78, March.
    7. Agnès Festré & Pierre Garrouste, 2012. "The ‘Economics of Attention’: A New Avenue of Research in Cognitive Economics," GREDEG Working Papers 2012-12, Groupe de REcherche en Droit, Economie, Gestion (GREDEG CNRS), University of Nice Sophia Antipolis.

    More about this item

    Keywords

    Salience; Induction; Convention;

    JEL classification:

    • B52 - Schools of Economic Thought and Methodology - - Current Heterodox Approaches - - - Historical; Institutional; Evolutionary
    • C73 - Mathematical and Quantitative Methods - - Game Theory and Bargaining Theory - - - Stochastic and Dynamic Games; Evolutionary Games
    • D83 - Microeconomics - - Information, Knowledge, and Uncertainty - - - Search; Learning; Information and Knowledge; Communication; Belief; Unawareness

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