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Representations of epistemic uncertainty and its perception in data-driven strategies

Mario AngelelliMassimiliano Gervasi
Nov 2023
The diffusion of AI and big data is reshaping decision-making processes by increasing the amount of information that supports decisions while reducing direct interaction with data and empirical evidence. This paradigm shift introduces new sources of uncertainty, as limited data observability results in ambiguity and a lack of interpretability. The need for the proper analysis of data-driven strategies motivates the search for new models that can describe this type of bounded access to knowledge. This contribution presents a novel theoretical model for uncertainty in knowledge representation and its transfer mediated by agents. We provide a dynamical description of knowledge states by endowing our model with a structure to compare and combine them. Specifically, an update is represented through combinations, and its explainability is based on its consistency in different dimensional representations. We look at inequivalent knowledge representations in terms of multiplicity of inferences, preference relations, and information measures. Furthermore, we define a formal analogy with two scenarios that illustrate non-classical uncertainty in terms of ambiguity (Ellsberg's model) and reasoning about knowledge mediated by other agents observing data (Wigner's friend). Finally, we discuss some implications of the proposed model for data-driven strategies, with special attention to reasoning under uncertainty about business value dimensions and the design of measurement tools for their assessment.
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