Citations (2)



Modeling Collective Belief

Margaret P. Gilbert

University of California, Irvine

Synthese, Vol. 73, pp. 185-204, 1987

What is it for a group to believe something? A summative account assumes that for a group to believe that p most members of the group must believe that p. Accounts of this type are commonly proposed in interpretation of everyday ascriptions of beliefs to groups. I argue that a nonsummative account corresponds better to our unexamined understanding of such ascriptions. In particular I propose what I refer to as the 'joint acceptance' model of group belief. I argue that group beliefs according to the joint acceptance model are important phenomena whose aetiology and development require investigation. There is an analogous phenomenon of social or group preference, which social choice theory tends to ignore.

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Date posted: December 4, 2007  

Suggested Citation

Gilbert, Margaret P., Modeling Collective Belief. Synthese, Vol. 73, pp. 185-204, 1987. Available at SSRN: http://ssrn.com/abstract=1041361

Contact Information

Margaret P. Gilbert (Contact Author)
University of California, Irvine ( email )
Humanities Office Building
Irvine, CA 92697-4555
United States
HOME PAGE: http://www.faculty.uci.edu/profile.cfm?faculty_id=5365
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