A Syntactic Model of Forgetting: A Partially Solved Problem

Mathias Risse

We look at a set % of states of the world which are defined as maximal consistent lists of formulae formed in a language which contains a knowledge operator ki for each agent i. The states of the world induce an information partition for each agent i such that all those % % % are included in the same information cell which contain the same range of knowledge for this agent (this range of knowledge we will call the agent's ken). We can then ask what it means that some agent i forgets which one of a variety of kens he has. This question can be answered easily if we use states of the world as primitives: then the answer is just to take a union over information cells. This does not make sense any more when states of the world are lists of formulae. We find a solution to this question for the case of one agent and show why the same solution cannot be used for the case of more than one agent. In an appendix, we apply results obtained before to analyze the j-operator (the knowing-whether operator). The larger context in which our question arose was to prove the Bachrach-Cave Agreement-Theorem in a model where states of the world are not primitives.

June, 1995
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