Natural Selection with Objective Imprecise Probability


Marshall Abrams ;
Proceedings of the Eleventh International Symposium on Imprecise Probabilities: Theories and Applications, PMLR 103:2-13, 2019.


I argue that natural selection sometimes depends on objective imprecise probabilities. I give a general argument for the existence of objective imprecise probabilities. I then argue that natural selection, whether involving objective imprecise probabilities or not, would give rise to organisms whose behavior was imprecisely probabilistic, and that this would mean that other organisms’ environments were imprecisely probabilistic. Since natural selection can be influenced by the environment, it therefore sometimes depends on objective imprecise probability. I explain why the absence of reports of objective imprecise probability in evolution is nevertheless unsurprising, and provide illustrations of ways to model natural selection with objective imprecise probabilities.

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