Proceedings of the XXIII World Congress of Philosophy

Volume 72, 2018

Social Philosophy

Vladimir S. Diev
Pages 19-22

Rational Decisions in the Conditions of Risk
Philosophical and Methodological Foundations

Any human activity can be easily presented as a chain of preparing, making and implementing decisions. The importance of decision-making for social philosophy is due to their role in the life of society and the single individual. The decision is an event which is socially conditioned; it integrates knowledge, interests and the world-view of the person. In the modern world, risk is a feature of everyday life and affects everyone. The choice of a decision in the conditions of risk is usually based on a certain model of rational behavior, which highlights the question of what actions can be considered rational. The answer to this question presupposes certain philosophical and methodological foundations. Philosophy in this case performs an integrating function, combining approaches of various disciplines on the one hand, and forming a common conceptual basis on the other. The paper presents the author’s methodological position that risk is always related to the agent and decisions that he or she makes. In the conditions of risk there always is a quantitative evaluation of the decision’s consequences which is not possible in the conditions of uncertainty, and this is the key factor in distinguishing risk and uncertainty. The author provides justification for the thesis that decision-making in the conditions of risk is not an agent’s confrontation with circumstances beyond their control but a conscious and rational choice. The author also shows the importance of procedural rationality for decision preparation and making.