Noise: A Flaw in Human Judgment

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From the Nobel Prize-winning author of Thinking, Fast and Slow and the coauthor of Nudge, a revolutionary exploration of why people make bad judgments and how to make better ones--"a tour de force" (New York Times).
Imagine that two doctors in the same city give different diagnoses to identical patients--or that two judges in the same courthouse give markedly different sentences to people who have committed the same crime. Suppose that different interviewers at the same firm make different decisions about indistinguishable job applicants--or that when a company is handling customer complaints, the resolution depends on who happens to answer the phone. Now imagine that the same doctor, the same judge, the same interviewer, or the same customer service agent makes different decisions depending on whether it is morning or afternoon, or Monday rather than Wednesday. These are examples of noise: variability in judgments that should be identical.
In Noise, Daniel Kahneman, Olivier Sibony, and Cass R. Sunstein show the detrimental effects of noise in many fields, including medicine, law, economic forecasting, forensic science, bail, child protection, strategy, performance reviews, and personnel selection. Wherever there is judgment, there is noise. Yet, most of the time, individuals and organizations alike are unaware of it. They neglect noise. With a few simple remedies, people can reduce both noise and bias, and so make far better decisions.
Packed with original ideas, and offering the same kinds of research-based insights that made Thinking, Fast and Slow and Nudge groundbreaking New York Times bestsellers, Noise explains how and why humans are so susceptible to noise in judgment--and what we can do about it.
Review Citations:
  • Publishers Weekly 03/15/2021 (EAN 9780316451406, Hardcover)
  • Kirkus Reviews 04/01/2021 (EAN 9780316451406, Hardcover)

ABOUT THE AUTHORS

Daniel Kahneman is the Eugene Higgins Professor of Psychology, Princeton University, Professor of Public Affairs, Woodrow Wilson School of Public and International Affairs, and the winner of the 2002 Nobel Prize in Economic Sciences. Kahneman is a member of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences and the National Academy of Sciences. He is a fellow of the American Psychological Association, the American Psychological Society, the Society of Experimental Psychologists, and the Econometric Society. He has been the recipient of numerous awards, among them the Distinguished Scientific Contribution Award of the American Psychological Association, the Warren Medal of the Society of Experimental Psychologists, and Hilgard Award for Career Contributions to General Psychology, and the Award for Lifetime Contributions to Psychology from the American Psychological Association. He lives in New York City. He is the author of New York Times bestseller Thinking, Fast and Slow.

Olivier Sibony is a professor, writer and advisor specializing in the quality of strategic thinking and the design of decision processes. Sibony teaches Strategy, Decision Making and Problem Solving at HEC Paris. He is also an Associate Fellow of Saïd Business School in Oxford University. Sibony's research centers on improving the quality of decision making by reducing the impact of behavioral biases. He is the author of numerous articles in academic and popular publications, including Before You Make That Big Decision, co-authored with Nobel Prize winner Daniel Kahneman.

Cass R. Sunstein is currently the Robert Walmsley University Professor at Harvard. From 2009 to 2012, he was Administrator of the White House Office of Information and Regulatory Affairs. From 2013 to 2014, he served on President Obama's Review Group on Intelligence and Communications Technologies. From 2016 to 2017, he served on the Defense Innovation Board of the US Department of Defense. Sunstein is author of many articles and books, including two New York Times bestsellers: The World According to Star Wars and Nudge (with Richard H. Thaler). His other books include Republic.com, Risk and ReasonWhy Societies Need Dissent, The Second Bill of Rights, Conspiracy Theories and Other Dangerous Ideas, The Ethics of Influence, and Can It Happen Here? Authoritarianism in America. He lives in Cambridge, Massachusetts.

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