Avital Pilpel



My area of research is belief change in the Pragmatist tradition. As a Pragmatist, I believe we need not justify our beliefs. Rather, we need to justify changes in our beliefs - whether real or suppositional, in science or in any other field of inquiry. We should justify such changes by the principles of rational decision theory. 

Rational decision theory deals, of course, with more than decisions about belief change. It deals with making decisions as a whole. More generally, I am interested in the philosophy of rational decision making: in economics, in mental health, and in deciding how to act in general life conflicts.

Rational choice theory is how philosophers try to understand decision making. The other side of the coin is equally important: decision makers need to understand philosophy. The use of philosophy to make better life decisions is known as philosophical counseling.

Philosophy has many mansions - from philosophy of Action under "A", to Zhuangzi's view of Daoism under "Z". Many philosophical fields have potential power to help us make better life decisions. Only very fiew have been used by therapists. I now systematically investigate different philosophical traditions' therapeutic power.

For some of my publications, please see my CV.