Rational inference of relative preferences

Nisheeth Srivastava, Paul R Schrater

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference contribution

5 Scopus citations

Abstract

Statistical decision theory axiomatically assumes that the relative desirability of different options that humans perceive is well described by assigning them optionspecific scalar utility functions. However, this assumption is refuted by observed human behavior, including studies wherein preferences have been shown to change systematically simply through variation in the set of choice options presented. In this paper, we show that interpreting desirability as a relative comparison between available options at any particular decision instance results in a rational theory of value-inference that explains heretofore intractable violations of rational choice behavior in human subjects. Complementarily, we also characterize the conditions under which a rational agent selecting optimal options indicated by dynamic value inference in our framework will behave identically to one whose preferences are encoded using a static ordinal utility function.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Title of host publicationAdvances in Neural Information Processing Systems 25
Subtitle of host publication26th Annual Conference on Neural Information Processing Systems 2012, NIPS 2012
Pages2303-2311
Number of pages9
StatePublished - Dec 1 2012
Event26th Annual Conference on Neural Information Processing Systems 2012, NIPS 2012 - Lake Tahoe, NV, United States
Duration: Dec 3 2012Dec 6 2012

Publication series

NameAdvances in Neural Information Processing Systems
Volume3
ISSN (Print)1049-5258

Other

Other26th Annual Conference on Neural Information Processing Systems 2012, NIPS 2012
CountryUnited States
CityLake Tahoe, NV
Period12/3/1212/6/12

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