Iterated Revision as Prioritized Merging

James Delgrande, Didier Dubois, and Jérôme Lang

Standard accounts of iterated belief revision assume a static world, about which an agent receives a sequence of observations. More recent items are assumed to have priority over less recent items. We argue that there is no reason, given a static world, for giving priority to more recent items. Instead we suggest that a sequence of observations should be merged with the agent's beliefs. Since observations may have differing reliability, arguably the appropriate belief change operator is prioritized merging. We develop this view here, suggesting postulates for prioritized merging, and examining existing merging operators with respect to these postulates. As well, we examine other suggested postulates for iterated revision, to determine how well they fit with the prioritized merging interpretation. All postulates for iterated revision that we examine, except for Darwiche and Pearl's controversial C2, are consequences of our suggested postulates for prioritized merging.

Subjects: 15.1 Belief Revision; 9.4 Philosophical Foundations

Submitted: Mar 6, 2006

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