Actions and Inconsistency: The Closure Problem of Practical Reasoning

  • Douglas Walton
Part of the Synthese Library book series (SYLI, volume 266)


This article formulates a fundamental problem in the philosophy of action. It will become apparent that the same problem is also an abstract and general, but very important question for the field of artificial intelligence — and robotics in particular. As well, the nature of the problem, as revealed below, will make evident its importance in the field of logical evaluation of natural language argumentation. The problem is one of when a knowledge-based goal-directed inference leading to an action (or a recommendation for a course of action to be taken) may be said to be structurally correct (or closed), parallel to the sense in which a deductive argument is said to be valid (deductively closed).


Practical Reasoning Argumentation Scheme Closure Problem Logical Inconsistency Deductive Argument 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media Dordrecht 1997

Authors and Affiliations

  • Douglas Walton
    • 1
  1. 1.University of WinnipegCanada

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