The Effects of Effects on Constructivism

Liron Cohen, Sofia Abreu Faro, Ross Tate

Research output: Contribution to journalConference articlepeer-review

3 Scopus citations


It is commonly understood that Countable Choice holds constructively due to the underlying computational nature of constructivism. However, in this paper we demonstrate that invoking different notions of computation result in radically different behaviors regarding Countable Choice. In particular, we illustrate that, although deterministic computation guarantees Countable Choice, non-deterministic computation can negate Countable Choice. We then further show that using stateful computation can restore Countable Choice even in the presence of non-determinism. This finding suggests that much of the modern discourse of constructivism assumes a deterministic underlying computational system, despite non-determinism being a fundamental aspect of modern-day computation.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)87-120
Number of pages34
JournalElectronic Notes in Theoretical Computer Science
StatePublished - 1 Jan 2019
Externally publishedYes
Event35th Conference on the Mathematical Foundations of Programming Semantics, MFPS 2019 - London, United Kingdom
Duration: 4 Jun 20197 Jun 2019


  • constructivism
  • countable choice
  • effects
  • non-determinism
  • stateful computation

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Theoretical Computer Science
  • General Computer Science


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