A general theory of probabilistic monads is developed and related to commutative effectuses.
Effectuses have recently been introduced as categorical models for quantum computation, with probabilistic and Boolean (classical) computation as special cases. These ‘probabilistic’ models are called commutative effectuses, and are the focus of attention here. The paper describes the main known ‘probability’ monads: the monad of discrete probability measures, the Giry monad, the expectation monad, the probabilistic power domain monad, the Radon monad, and the Kantorovich monad. It also introduces successive properties that a monad should satisfy so that its Kleisli category is a commutative effectus. The main properties are: partial additivity, strong affineness, and commutativity. It is shown that the resulting commutative effectus provides a categorical model of probability theory, including a logic using effect modules with parallel and sequential conjunction, predicate- and state-transformers, normalisation and conditioning of states.