UCL Discovery
UCL home » Library Services » Electronic resources » UCL Discovery

A formal model of interpersonal inference.

Moutoussis, M; Trujillo-Barreto, NJ; El-Deredy, W; Dolan, RJ; Friston, KJ; (2014) A formal model of interpersonal inference. Front Hum Neurosci , 8 , Article 160. 10.3389/fnhum.2014.00160. Green open access

[img]
Preview
PDF
fnhum-08-00160.pdf

Download (1MB)

Abstract

Introduction: We propose that active Bayesian inference-a general framework for decision-making-can equally be applied to interpersonal exchanges. Social cognition, however, entails special challenges. We address these challenges through a novel formulation of a formal model and demonstrate its psychological significance. Method: We review relevant literature, especially with regards to interpersonal representations, formulate a mathematical model and present a simulation study. The model accommodates normative models from utility theory and places them within the broader setting of Bayesian inference. Crucially, we endow people's prior beliefs, into which utilities are absorbed, with preferences of self and others. The simulation illustrates the model's dynamics and furnishes elementary predictions of the theory. Results: (1) Because beliefs about self and others inform both the desirability and plausibility of outcomes, in this framework interpersonal representations become beliefs that have to be actively inferred. This inference, akin to "mentalizing" in the psychological literature, is based upon the outcomes of interpersonal exchanges. (2) We show how some well-known social-psychological phenomena (e.g., self-serving biases) can be explained in terms of active interpersonal inference. (3) Mentalizing naturally entails Bayesian updating of how people value social outcomes. Crucially this includes inference about one's own qualities and preferences. Conclusion: We inaugurate a Bayes optimal framework for modeling intersubject variability in mentalizing during interpersonal exchanges. Here, interpersonal representations are endowed with explicit functional and affective properties. We suggest the active inference framework lends itself to the study of psychiatric conditions where mentalizing is distorted.

Type: Article
Title: A formal model of interpersonal inference.
Location: Switzerland
Open access status: An open access version is available from UCL Discovery
DOI: 10.3389/fnhum.2014.00160
Publisher version: http://dx.doi.org/10.3389/fnhum.2014.00160
Language: English
Additional information: © 2014 Moutoussis, Trujillo-Barreto, El-Deredy, Dolan and Friston. This is an open-access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License (CC BY). The use, distribution or reproduction in other forums is permitted, provided the original author(s) or licensor are credited and that the original publication in this journal is cited, in accordance with accepted academic practice. No use, distribution or reproduction is permitted which does not comply with these terms.PMCID: PMC3971175
Keywords: Bayesian, active inference, evidence, free energy, interpersonal, self-organization, surprise, value
UCL classification: UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences > Faculty of Brain Sciences
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences > Faculty of Brain Sciences > UCL Queen Square Institute of Neurology
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences > Faculty of Brain Sciences > UCL Queen Square Institute of Neurology > Imaging Neuroscience
URI: https://discovery.ucl.ac.uk/id/eprint/1427301
Downloads since deposit
146Downloads
Download activity - last month
Download activity - last 12 months
Downloads by country - last 12 months

Archive Staff Only

View Item View Item