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Bayesian Belief Polarization
Alan Jern · Kai-min K Chang · Charles Kemp

Wed Dec 09 07:00 PM -- 11:59 PM (PST) @

Situations in which people with opposing prior beliefs observe the same evidence and then strengthen those existing beliefs are frequently offered as evidence of human irrationality. This phenomenon, termed belief polarization, is typically assumed to be non-normative. We demonstrate, however, that a variety of cases of belief polarization are consistent with a Bayesian approach to belief revision. Simulation results indicate that belief polarization is not only possible but relatively common within the class of Bayesian models that we consider.

Author Information

Alan Jern (Rose-Hulman Institute of Technology)
Kai-min K Chang (Carnegie Mellon University)
Charles Kemp (Carnegie Mellon University)

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