Artificial Intelligence and Law

, Volume 9, Issue 2–3, pp 153–163 | Cite as

Kappa calculus and evidential strength: A note on Åqvist's logical theory of legal evidence

  • Solomon Eyal Shimony
  • Ephraim Nissan

Abstract

Lennart Åqvist (1992) proposed a logical theory of legal evidence, based on the Bolding-Ekelöf of degrees of evidential strength. This paper reformulates Åqvist's model in terms of the probabilistic version of the kappa calculus. Proving its acceptability in the legal context is beyond the present scope, but the epistemological debate about Bayesian Law isclearly relevant. While the present model is a possible link to that lineof inquiry, we offer some considerations about the broader picture of thepotential of AI & Law in the evidentiary context. Whereas probabilisticreasoning is well-researched in AI, calculations about the threshold ofpersuasion in litigation, whatever their value, are just the tip of theiceberg. The bulk of the modeling desiderata is arguably elsewhere, if one isto ideally make the most of AI's distinctive contribution as envisaged forlegal evidence research.

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Copyright information

© Kluwer Academic Publishers 2001

Authors and Affiliations

  • Solomon Eyal Shimony
    • 1
  • Ephraim Nissan
    • 2
  1. 1.Department of Computer ScienceBen-Gurion University of the NegevBeer-ShevaIsrael
  2. 2.School of Computing and Information SystemsThe University of GreenwichGreenwich, LondonUK

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