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Dunnaway, B., Edmonds, A., and Manley, D. (forthcoming). "The Folk Probably Do Think What You Think They Think". AJP.

• Much of contemporary experimental philosophy involves taking surveys of ‘folk’ subjects to test their intuitions involving philosophically relevant concepts. The results of these surveys are often claimed to be surprising, and treated as evidence that the relevant folk intuitions cannot be predicted from the ‘armchair’. We conducted an experiment to test these claims, and found that a solid majority of philosophers could predict even results that were claimed to be surprising in the literature. We discuss some methodological implications as well as some possible explanations for the common surprisingness claim


Eric Schwitzgebel

Cool idea, Josh! You might also like Michiru Nagatsu's paper "Experimental Philosophy of Economics", forthcoming in a special issue of Economics & Philosophy edited by James Konow and me. A draft is available here:

No data, but an interesting angle on the potential value of exploring experts' opinions about theoretical concepts in economics.

Joshua Knobe

Thanks! Both of these papers look very helpful, and I've now included the one with data on philosophical intuitions in the post itself.

Edouard Machery

Machery, E. 2012. Expertise and intuitions about reference. Theoria,

Accessible there:

(M. Devitt has a response in the same issue).

I present some data that tentatively suggest that linguists' and philosophers' intuitions about reference are influenced by their disciplinary background.

Edouard Machery

Stotz, K., Linquist, S., Griffiths, P., and Machery, E. (ms). Expert representations of innateness. (Order of the authors to be determined.)

We provide evidence that the concept of innateness is not influenced by the disciplinary affiliations of scientists across a range of areas.

Edouard Machery

Tobia, K., Buckwalter, W., & Stich, S. (Forthcoming). Moral intuitions: Are philosophers experts? Philosophical Psychology.

This article shows that philosophers suffer from the actor-observor bias

Joshua Knobe

Thanks once again! I have now included all of these references in the main post.

(Quick note: I have not read all of these papers myself and am in some cases simply relying on the summaries given in the comments above.)

Eric Schwitzgebel

Kuntz JR & Kuntz JRC (2011). Surveying philosophers about philosophical intuition. RPP 2: 643-665.

Joshua Knobe

Thanks Eric -- I've now added that one in as well.

Jonathan Livengood

I'm not sure whether this is on target or not, but Justin Sytsma, Adam Feltz, Richard Scheines, Edouard Machery, and I have a paper on philosophical temperament, in which we observe that philosophical training is positively associated with CRT score, even after controlling for education level.

We could not determine on the basis of the data whether increased philosophical training causes increased CRT scores or whether there is a selection effect (or a bit of both). Hence, the effect of philosophical training on cognitive reflection is still very much an open question.

Jonathan Livengood

Here is a link:

(I thought that html flags worked, but apparently, they don't.)

Adam Feltz

Schulz, E., Cokely, E.T., & Feltz, A. (2011). Persistent bias in expert judgments about free will and moral responsibility: A test of the Expertise Defense. Consciousness and Cognition, 20, 1722-1731. (

We find that extraversion continues to predict compatibilist free will judgments even after controlling for free will expertise using a verified test of free will expertise.

Kevin Tobia

This is an interesting draft by Krist Vaesen and Martin Peterson: The Reliability of Armchair Intuitions.

They find that philosophers' intuitions about knowledge vary with respect to linguistic background (English vs. Dutch, German, or Swedish).

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3QD Prize 2012: Wesley Buckwalter