Friday, February 17, 2006

Trust Me: I'm an Amateur

Loath as I am to knock that beautiful photo of Kate Moss off the top of the page, I wanted to draw attention to this book, Expert Political Judgment: How Good Is It? How Can We Know?, by Philip E. Tetlock, reviewed here by Geoffrey Colvin. In the book, Tetlock summarizes the results of his remarkable research project: Over seven years, he got a wide range of experts and nonexperts to answer carefully constructed questions about the likelihood of specific future political and economic events. A staggering 82,361 forecasts were gathered, and the analysis revealed that the experts were no better than nonexperts at predicting the future. Not only that, but the more famous a forecaster was, the MORE likely he or she was to be WRONG.

It's exactly the conclusion I would have predicted.

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