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Doctoral Thesis "Concrete Causation. About the Structures of Causal Knowledge."

Roland Poellinger's doctoral thesis "Concrete Causation. About the Structures of Causal Knowledge" (supervisor: Godehard Link - logic; further comittee members: Thomas Augustin, statistics, Klaus Schulz, computational linguistics, and C. Ulises Moulines, philosophy of science) centers about theories of causation, their interpretation and embedding in metaphysical-ontological questions, as well as the application of such theories in the context of science or decision theory. The main proposal is the development of a framework for integrating causal and non-causal knowledge in unified structures and the definition of methods for consistent inference of causal claims from such patterns. Applications are problems of (causal) decision theory or the representation of logical-mathematical, synonymical, as well as reductive relationships in efficiently structured, operational nets of belief propagation.

The dissertation concludes the PhD project comprising the international conference "Concrete Causation" (2010) and the appertaining channel in iTunes U containing recordings of the "Concrete Causation" conference talks and of further research.

Download a summary of the thesis here [PDF].

[Keywords: causal modeling, interventionist account of causation, DAG, Bayesian networks, intervention, causal knowledge pattern, epistemic contour, subjective causation, Newcomb's paradox, prisoners' dilemma, causal Markov condition, Judea Pearl, David Lewis, Wolfgang Spohn]