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New Frameworks of Rationality

The goal of the priority program ―New Frameworks of Rationality‖ (SPP 1516) is to overcome the long lasting lack of collaboration between psychologists and philosophers (and other disciplines, such as AI) in order to develop a new theoretical framework of human rationality. To reach this goal, the SPP seeks to answer new questions that go beyond the limitations of 20th century research on rationality.

The SPP will explore, first, the usefulness of new normative theories of rationality for modeling human thinking and decision making, and, second, the contribution that new empirical findings in psychology can make to the development of normative theories of rationality. To foster such an interdisciplinary discourse between the participating disciplines, a number of instruments will be integrated into the SPP.

The first instrument is to create interdisciplinary thematically focused research clusters. In the SPP the following three research clusters are planned:

  • Conditional, counterfactual, and causal reasoning
  • Probabilistic reasoning, inductive reasoning, and belief revision
  • Decision Making and Practical Reasoning 



The three clusters were already defined for the SPP-proposal, but it is clear that the final clustering depends on the research projects that are finally accepted for the SPP. A second important instrument to foster the interdisciplinarity of the SPP is a coordination project, for which we hereby apply. The coordination project will coordinate and support the interdisciplinary collaboration between the different disciplines in the SPP and will – together with the coordinator – be responsible for the management of the program. The most important tasks for the coordination project will be the facilitation of conceptual coherence and cooperation within the SPP, the promotion of national and international visibility, the promotion of young researchers, equal opportunities, and gender-equality, and issues of public rela-tions and the communication with the public. The coordination project will also pay special attention to the transfer of knowledge to benefit the society.


Contact: Prof. Dr. Markus Knauff

Projektnummer 201319509