Independent opinions? on the causal foundations of belief formation and jury theorems
It is often claimed that opinions are more likely to be correct if they are held independently by many individuals. But what does it mean to hold independent opinions? To clarify this condition, we distinguish four notions of probabilistic opinion independence. Which notion applies depends on environmental factors such as commonly perceived evidence, or, more formally, on the causal network in which people interact and form their opinions. In a general theorem, we identify conditions on this network that guarantee opinion independence in each sense. Our results have implications for `wisdom of crowds' arguments, as we illustrate by providing old and new jury theorems.
|Date of creation:||Jul 2012|
|Date of revision:||Oct 2010|
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- Dietrich Franz & Spiekermann Kai, 2010.
"Epistemic Democracy with Defensible Premises,"
066, Maastricht University, Maastricht Research School of Economics of Technology and Organization (METEOR).
- Dietrich, Franz & Spiekermann, Kai, 2010. "Epistemic democracy with defensible premises," MPRA Paper 40135, University Library of Munich, Germany, revised Jun 2012.
- Franz Dietrich & Kai Spiekermann, 2013. "Epistemic democracy with defensible premises," Université Paris1 Panthéon-Sorbonne (Post-Print and Working Papers) halshs-00978008, HAL.
- Spiekermann, Kai & Goodin, Robert E., 2012. "Courts of Many Minds," British Journal of Political Science, Cambridge University Press, vol. 42(03), pages 555-571, July.
- Franz Dietrich & Christian List, 2002. "A Model of Jury Decisions Where All Jurors Have the Same Evidence," Economics Papers 2002-W23, Economics Group, Nuffield College, University of Oxford.
- Serguei Kaniovski, 2010. "Aggregation of correlated votes and Condorcet’s Jury Theorem," Theory and Decision, Springer, vol. 69(3), pages 453-468, September.
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