On the Hierarchical Nature of Partial Preferences

  • Luigi SauroEmail author
Conference paper
Part of the Lecture Notes in Computer Science book series (LNCS, volume 9387)


In this work we generalize classical Decision Theory by considering that a preference relation might not be total. Incomplete preferences may be helpful to represent those situations where, due to lack of information, the decision maker would like to maintain different options alive and defer the final decision. In particular, we show that, when totality is pulled out, different formalizations of classical Decision Theory become not equivalent. We provide a hierarchical characterization of such formalizations and show that some derived properties of classical Decision Theory, such as justification, no longer hold. Consequently, whenever profitable, justification has to be reintroduced into the theory as an independent axiom.


Preference Relation Decision Theory Convex Combination Axiomatic System Software Agent 
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Copyright information

© Springer International Publishing Switzerland 2015

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of Electrical Engineering and Information TechnologiesUniversità di Napoli “Federico II”NaplesItaly

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