Logics of Agency
Course Description: This course introduces students to the research on logics of agency that has been conducted over the last 10 years. Starting with Davidson `71 the phenomenon of agency was originally studied in philosophy. The problem of agency is to understand how it can be that we can claim that agents are responsible for actions, choices or state changes, in the context of either a deterministic or indeterministic world view. A radical departure from the Davidsonian view on agency emerged in the 90ies with the work of Belnap and others who put forward stit-theory (stit is an acronym for `seeing to it that’). Some 8 years ago, it was recognized that stit theory has much in common with formalisms used to reason in the context of multi-agent systems in computer science (Coalition Logic and Alternating Time Temporal Logic). This was the starting point for many fruitful investigations linking stit logics with logics for strategies, dynamic logics, agent programming languages, planning theories (HTN planning), deontic logics, BDI logics, probabilistic logics, Markov decision process, logics of attempt and risk taking, etc. This course will give an overview of the work done in this area and will introduce students to the fascinating open problems and controversies of the field of research. The material used in the course will be based on a draft version of forthcoming book on stit theory in philosophy and computers science.