Fri, Nov 17, 2017

Inconsistency Robustness’14 Symposium

Call for Participation Inconsistency Robustness 2014

Stanford University 3-4 days Summer 2014

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Inconsistency robustness is information system performance in the face of continually pervasive inconsistencies---a shift from the previously

dominant paradigms of inconsistency denial and inconsistency elimination attempting to sweep them under the rug.

Illustrative Issues

In fact, inconsistencies are pervasive throughout our information infrastructure and they affect one another. Consequently, an interdisciplinary approach is needed. For example, (in no particular order ):

  • Computational linguistics relies on human-annotated data to train machine learners. Inconsistency among the human annotators must be carefully managed (otherwise, the annotations are useless in computation). How can this annotation process be made scalable?
  • What are the limitations in the ability of a many-core computer software system to measure and diagnose its own performance?
  • How to deal with the strategic inconsistency between classical microeconomics (i.e. individual economic transactions lead to generally desirable outcomes) and Keynesian macroeconomics (i.e. fraud, externalities, and monetary instabilities require government regulation)?
  • Addiction is a huge health problem in which inconsistencies abound. For example, Step 1 in Twelve Step programs of recovery is that addicts admit that they are powerless over their addiction.
  • In teaching situations (e.g. with infants, avatars, or robots), how does a teacher realize that they need to help correct a learner and how does a learner realize what correction is needed?
  • Is privacy protection inconsistent with preventing terrorism?
  • How do appellate courts deal with inconsistent decisions of lower courts?
  • If interlocutors in the same organization hold inconsistent positions, how do they negotiate? If the interlocutors are in separate organizations with overlapping concerns, how are the negotiations different?
  • Is the existence of an observer-independent objective view of reality inconsistent with the laws of physics?
  • What kind of regulation is consistent with innovation?
  • How are inconsistencies in law related to inconsistencies in science?
  • What are foundations for robust reasoning in pervasively inconsistent theories?
  • How can effective use be made of theories that are known to have wrong assumptions? For example, micro-economics with multiple equilibria.
  • Does the human brain mediate inconsistencies among its constituent parts?

In each case, inconsistencies need to be precisely identified and their consequences explored.


Inconsistency robustness differs from previous paradigms based on belief revision, probability, and uncertainty

as follows:

  • Belief revision: Large information systems are continually, pervasively inconsistent and there is no way to revise them to attain consistency.
  • Probability and fuzzy logic: In large information systems, there are typically several ways to calculate probability. Often the result is that the probability is both close to 0% and close to 100%!
  • Uncertainty: Resolving uncertainty to determine truth is not a realistic goal in large information systems.


This interdisciplinary symposium is conducted under the auspices of the International Society for Inconsistency Robustness. The symposium is broadly based on theory and practice, addresses fundamental issues in inconsistency robustness is the follow-on symposium to Inconsistency Robustness 2011.

Submissions will be refereed by the program committee and those accepted will be published in the proceedings. The symposium program will consist of presentations of accepted refereed submissions, panel discussions, and invited lectures that will be video-recorded, edited, and posted on the Internet after the end of the symposium.

Topics of Interest include: affect and sentiment, argumentation, authority and accountability, classifications and ontologies, collaboration, design, discretion, education, efficiency, finance, history, innovation, judgment, language, organizational management, prediction, provenance, risk management, repair, social structure, scalability, and timeliness.

Important dates

  • May 30, 2013: Due date for extended abstracts (at least 4 pages and no more than 6 excluding references in at least 10 pt. font) and panel proposals. A submission for which there is no extended abstract is subject to summary rejection.
  • September 30, 2013: Due date of full technical papers and revised panel proposals. A hard limit on size will not be imposed because the proceedings will be produced electronically. So anything up to about 25K words would be possible. Of course, the length must be suitable to the subject matter . Refereed proceedings will be published in archival form. In addition, a PDF of the entire proceedings will be available to the public online without charge. Authors will retain copyright subject to the ability of Stanford to freely distribute.
  • February 28, 2014: Notification of acceptance, conditional acceptance, or non-acceptance.

Submissions should be made via the EasyChair website at:

Electronic version of Call: