SOPhiA 2017

Salzburgiense Concilium Omnibus Philosophis Analyticis

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Programme - Talk

Probabilistic Approaches to (Prototype) Concepts
(Affiliated Workshop, English)

The applicability of the classical, definitional view of meaning has long been disputed for common-sense concepts. Especially on the basic and superordinate level of abstraction we find many characteristic, though neither necessary nor sufficient, properties that contribute to the meaning of concepts -- prominent examples being 'can fly' for birds or 'having a peel' for fruit. In the 1970s, Eleanor Rosch and colleagues found that many natural categories are structured along an intersubjectively stable typicality gradient, which was repeatedly shown to influence many psychologically relevant variables (cf. Mervis&Rosch, 1981).
As a consequence, there has been intensive interdisciplinary research on probabilistic representations of concepts. Three general representation formats have been proposed:

(a) probabilistic attribute-value-structures (e.g. Barsalou, 1992, Schurz, 2012),
(b) probabilities in conceptual spaces (e.g. Gärdenfors, 2000), and
(c) association networks (e.g. de Deyne, Storms, 2008).

The workshop is thought of as a platform for presenting and comparing the different approaches and discuss current research projects.

Barsalou, Lawrence W. (1992): Frames, Concepts, and Conceptual Fields. In: Kittay, E., Lehrer, A. (ed.): Frames, Fields, and Contrasts: Erlbaum, pp. 21-74.
Deyne, Simon de; Storms, Gert (2008): Word associations. Network and semantic properties. In: Behav Res 40 (1), pp. 213-231.
Gärdenfors, Peter (2000): Conceptual spaces. The geometry of thought. Cambridge, Mass: MIT Press.
Mervis, Carolyn B.; Rosch, Eleanor (1981): Categorization of Natural Objects. In: Annu. Rev. Psychol. 32 (1), pp. 89-115.
Schurz, Gerhard (2012): Prototypes and their Composition from an Evolutionary Point of View. In: Wolfram Hinzen, Edouard Machery und Markus Werning (Hg.): The Oxford Handbook of Compositionality: Oxford University Press, pp. 530-554.

Organisation: Annika Schuster & Corina Strößner (HHUD Düsseldorf).

Chair: Annika Schuster & Corina Strößner
Time: 09:00-13:00, 13 September 2017 (Wednesday)
Location: SR 1.005

Annika Schuster 
(HHUD Düsseldorf, Germany)

Corina Strößner 
(HHUD Düsseldorf, Germany)

Testability and Meaning deco