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Institutions, rule-following and conditional reasoning

Hã‰doin, Cyril
Authors registered in the RePEc Author Service: Cyril Hédoin

Journal of Institutional Economics, 2019, vol. 15, issue 1, 1-25

Abstract: This paper is a contribution to the advancement of a naturalistic social ontology. Individuals participate in an institutionalized practice by following rules. In this perspective, I show that the nature, the stability, and the dynamics of any institution depend on how people reason about states of affairs that do not occur. That means that counterfactual reasoning is essential in the working of institutions. I present arguments for the importance of counterfactuals as well as a game-theoretic framework to account for them. Since the role of counterfactuals does not directly transpire in people's behavior, the whole discussion can be seen as a broad argument against behaviorism in philosophy and the social sciences.

Date: 2019
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Related works:
Working Paper: Institutions, Rule-Following and Conditional Reasoning (2019)
Working Paper: Institutions, Rule-Following and Conditional Reasoning (2017)
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