Stable Causal Relationships are Better Causal Relationships

Nadya Vasilyeva, Thomas Blanchard, Tania Lombrozo

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

1 Scopus citations

Abstract

We report two experiments investigating whether people's judgments about causal relationships are sensitive to the robustness or stability of such relationships across a wide range of background circumstances. We demonstrate that people prefer stable causal relationships even when overall causal strength is held constant, and we show that this effect is unlikely to be driven by a causal generalization's actual scope of application. This documents a previously unacknowledged factor that shapes people's causal reasoning.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Title of host publicationProceedings of the 38th Annual Meeting of the Cognitive Science Society, CogSci 2016
EditorsAnna Papafragou, Daniel Grodner, Daniel Mirman, John C. Trueswell
PublisherThe Cognitive Science Society
Pages2663-2668
Number of pages6
ISBN (Electronic)9780991196739
StatePublished - 2016
Event38th Annual Meeting of the Cognitive Science Society: Recognizing and Representing Events, CogSci 2016 - Philadelphia, United States
Duration: Aug 10 2016Aug 13 2016

Publication series

NameProceedings of the 38th Annual Meeting of the Cognitive Science Society, CogSci 2016

Conference

Conference38th Annual Meeting of the Cognitive Science Society: Recognizing and Representing Events, CogSci 2016
Country/TerritoryUnited States
CityPhiladelphia
Period8/10/168/13/16

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Artificial Intelligence
  • Computer Science Applications
  • Human-Computer Interaction
  • Cognitive Neuroscience

Keywords

  • background conditions
  • causality
  • explanation
  • moderating variables
  • stability

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