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Lower Previsions

by Wiley | SKU: 2333182020CB | UPC: | LOC: F-54-03-18-20
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This book has two main purposes. On the one hand, it provides a concise and systematic development of the theory of lower previsions, based on the concept of acceptability, in spirit of the work of Williams and Walley. On the other hand, it also extends this theory to deal with unbounded quantities, which abound in practical applications. Following Williams, we start out with sets of acceptable gambles. From those, we derive rationality criteria---avoiding sure loss and coherence---and inference methods---natural extension---for (unconditional) lower previsions. We then proceed to study various aspects of the resulting theory, including the concept of expectation (linear previsions), limits, vacuous models, classical propositional logic, lower oscillations, and monotone convergence. We discuss n-monotonicity for lower previsions, and relate lower previsions with Choquet integration, belief functions, random sets, possibility measures, various integrals, symmetry, and representation theorems based on the Bishop-De Leeuw theorem. Next, we extend the framework of sets of acceptable gambles to consider also unbounded quantities. As before, we again derive rationality criteria and inference methods for lower previsions, this time also allowing for conditioning. We apply this theory to construct extensions of lower previsions from bounded random quantities to a larger set of random quantities, based on ideas borrowed from the theory of Dunford integration. A first step is to extend a lower prevision to random quantities that are bounded on the complement of a null set (essentially bounded random quantities). This extension is achieved by a natural extension procedure that can be motivated by a rationality axiom stating that adding null random quantities does not affect acceptability. In a further step, we approximate unbounded random quantities by a sequence of bounded ones, and, in essence, we identify those for which the induced lower prevision limit does not depend on the details of the approximation. We call those random quantities 'previsible'. We study visibility by cut sequences and arrive at a simple sufficient condition. For the 2-monotone case, we establish a Choquet integral representation for the extension. For the general case, we prove that the extension can always be written as an envelope of Dunford integrals. We end with some examples of the theory.

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