The reversal test, status quo bias and opposition to human cognitive enhancement

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Abstract

Bostrom and Ord's reversal test has been appealed to by many philosophers to substantiate the charge that preferences for status quo options are motivated by status quo bias. I argue that their characterization of the reversal test needs to be modified, and that their description of the burden of proof it imposes needs to be clarified. I then argue that there is a way to meet that burden of proof which Bostrom and Ord fail to recognize. I also argue that the range of circumstances in which the reversal test can be usefully applied is narrower than they recognize.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)369-386
Number of pages18
JournalCanadian Journal of Philosophy
Volume46
Issue number3
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2016

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