Distorted Probabilities and Choice under Risk

  • Clemens Puppe

Part of the Lecture Notes in Economics and Mathematical Systems book series (LNE, volume 363)

Table of contents

  1. Front Matter
    Pages I-VIII
  2. Clemens Puppe
    Pages 1-7
  3. Clemens Puppe
    Pages 8-39
  4. Clemens Puppe
    Pages 67-87
  5. Clemens Puppe
    Pages 88-91
  6. Back Matter
    Pages 92-104

About this book


During the development of modern probability theory in the 17th cen­ tury it was commonly held that the attractiveness of a gamble offering the payoffs :1:17 ••• ,:l: with probabilities Pl, . . . , Pn is given by its expected n value L:~ :l:iPi. Accordingly, the decision problem of choosing among different such gambles - which will be called prospects or lotteries in the sequel-was thought to be solved by maximizing the corresponding expected values. The famous St. Petersburg paradox posed by Nicholas Bernoulli in 1728, however, conclusively demonstrated the fact that individuals l consider more than just the expected value. The resolution of the St. Petersburg paradox was proposed independently by Gabriel Cramer and Nicholas's cousin Daniel Bernoulli [BERNOULLI 1738/1954]. Their argument was that in a gamble with payoffs :l:i the decisive factors are not the payoffs themselves but their subjective values u( :l:i)' According to this argument gambles are evaluated on the basis of the expression L:~ U(Xi)pi. This hypothesis -with a somewhat different interpretation of the function u - has been given a solid axiomatic foundation in 1944 by v. Neumann and Morgenstern and is now known as the expected utility hypothesis. The resulting model has served for a long time as the preeminent theory of choice under risk, especially in its economic applications.


Non-linear utility Nutzentheorie Spieltheorie Wahrscheinlichkeit distorted probabilities rank-dependent utility theory utility theory

Authors and affiliations

  • Clemens Puppe
    • 1
  1. 1.Institut für Statistik und Mathematische WirtschaftstheorieUniversität KarlsruheKarlsruhe 1Germany

Bibliographic information

  • DOI
  • Copyright Information Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg 1991
  • Publisher Name Springer, Berlin, Heidelberg
  • eBook Packages Springer Book Archive
  • Print ISBN 978-3-540-54247-6
  • Online ISBN 978-3-642-58203-5
  • Series Print ISSN 0075-8442
  • Buy this book on publisher's site
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