The Workshop and The Project


SLIDES of Sonja Smets’ Introduction to the Workshop.

This workshop will create a platform for researchers coming from different fields to present their work and exchange ideas on the topic of belief change in social contexts.  We look both at already-established work as well as the possible new connections that can emerge between the areas of logic, belief revision theory, learning theory, game theory and social science.

We are particularly interested in the conceptual-theoretical work as well as in the applications of formal models to specific multi-agent scenarios in which belief revision plays a crucial role. In contrast to the classical single-agent approach to Belief Revision Theory, the new developments from the area of Logic and Game Theory make it now possible to pursue a multi-agent perspective. Similarly, the study of the iterated belief revision procedures can benefit from the work on learning strategies in Formal Learning Theory. Bringing the ideas from these different areas together allows us to put forward new theoretical work which can lead to new modeling techniques and offer a better understanding of puzzling social-informational phenomena (such as pluralistic ignorance, the bandwagoning effect, group polarization, etc.).



One of the central questions in this research project concerns the nature of the logic needed to discuss correlated information change. We seek to develop a uniform logical system that centers around correlated information change and can be used to explain and model various interactive scenarios. One of the aims of this research is to examine the correlations that arise in situations in which the very act of learning new information may directly change the reality that is being learnt. An example is the way in which an introspective agent changes her beliefs when learning new higher-order information, i.e. information that may refer to her own beliefs. A similar situation arises when a scientist learns about a phenomenon by performing measurements that perturb the very phenomenon under study (such as in the case of quantum measurements). More complex forms of correlated information change occur in groups of communicating agents when some agents’ beliefs about the others’ belief changes may trigger or influence their own belief change. In this interdisciplinary project, we will combine insights and techniques from a range of research domains, including logic, quantum mechanics, philosophy of science, belief revision theory, truth approximation and learning theory.

More information about the project can be found here.