An objective definition of subjective probability

N. Roos*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference article in proceedingAcademicpeer-review


Several attempts have been made to give an objective definition of subjective probability. These attempts can be divided into two approaches. The first approach uses an a priori probability distribution over the set of interpretations of the language that we are using to describe information. The idea is to define such an a priori probability distribution using some general principles such as the insufficient reason principle of Bemoulli and Laplace.The second approach does not start from a set of interpretations among which we try to find the one describing the world, but instead tries to build a partial model of the world. Uncertainty in the available information results in several possible partial models, each presenting a different view of the world. Using the insufficient reason principle, a probability is assigned to each view.This paper will present arguments for using the second approach instead of the first. Furthermore, a new formalization of the second approach, solving the problems of earlier attempts, will be given.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publication13TH European Conference on Artificial Intelligence
PublisherJohn Wiley & Sons Inc.
Number of pages5
ISBN (Print)0-471-98431-0
Publication statusPublished - 1998


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