Predictably Irrational

Predictably Irrational

The Hidden Forces That Shape Our Decisions

Book - 2009 | Rev. and expanded ed
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This evaluation of the sources of illogical decisions explores the reasons why irrational thought often overcomes level-headed practices, offering insight into the structural patterns that cause people to make the same mistakes repeatedly. In a series of illuminating, often surprising experiments, the author, a MIT behavioral economist, refutes the common assumption that we behave in fundamentally rational ways. Blending everyday experience with groundbreaking research, he explains how expectations, emotions, social norms, and other invisible, seemingly illogical forces skew our reasoning abilities. Not only do we make astonishingly simple mistakes every day, but we make the same types of mistakes, he discovers. We consistently overpay, underestimate, and procrastinate. We fail to understand the profound effects of our emotions on what we want, and we overvalue what we already own. Yet these misguided behaviors are neither random nor senseless. They are systematic and predictable, making us predictably irrational. From drinking coffee to losing weight, from buying a car to choosing a romantic partner, he explains how to break through these systematic patterns of thought to make better decisions. This book offers ways to change the way we interact with the world one small decision at a time.
Publisher: New York, NY : Harper, c2009
Edition: Rev. and expanded ed
ISBN: 9780061854545
0061854549
Branch Call Number: 153.83 ARI 2009
Characteristics: xxxii, 368 p. : ill. ; 23 cm
Alternative Title: Predictably rational

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From Library Staff

Ariely explores why irrational impulse so often trumps logic in human decision making.


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scottbbaird
Nov 24, 2019

Ariely showcases his study of human behaviour through his social experiments on his students. If you are interested in Behavioral Economics then this is the book for you. If you want to make better decisions, this might be worth a read but it may also be too much. Humans don't natural follow the rational path, even when it's the most beneficial or logical one.

c
candlesticktroughs
Oct 27, 2019

" This multivoiced quality of experience is the essence of what i call DIALOGIC THINKING. It's not a term that Vygotsky used, but i believe that the idea is there in his writings. A solitary mind is actually a chorus. We can go so far as to say that minds are riddled with different voices because the they are never really solitary....other people's words get into our heads...our thinking IS social. Our minds contain multitudes, just as a work of fiction contains the voices of different characters with distinct perspectives. Thinking is a dialogue, and human cognition retains many of the powers of a conversation among different points of view."

j
JackS29
Jul 18, 2019

An excellent overview of what behavioral economics is about.

m
motocaab
Dec 12, 2018

Brilliant. I have since seeked out his other publications and TED talks and recommended to other people.

m
MaxCW26
Aug 28, 2017

Great book that provides an interesting look at human behavior and as the title implies how we can go against rational thinking. I really enjoyed the analysis at the end of the book about the need for a better relationship between rational economics and behavioral economics. I look forward to checking out more of Ariely's work.

r
rswcove
Mar 28, 2015

This book, along with 'You Are Now Less Dumb' form my core recommended introduction to why people make strange choices. I have seen it compared to 'Freakonomics'. I suppose if you're reading these books as distractions, the comparison may seem accurate. But as 'Freakonomics' is just that- a fluffy pointless distraction- I find the comparison inaccurate. 'Predictably Irrational' is a crash course on why we make choices that don't make sense, 'Freakonomics' is stand up comedy disguised as pop psychology. But I guess it depends on why you're reading.

francis_e Dec 11, 2014

Enjoyable book to read but I found it followed on the coattails of Freakonomics too much without adding any intellectual depth. Most arguments, while cogent, were arrived at easily. Good book to read on a beech for vacation, but, would steer clear if you are trying to learn something new.

a
AngryCrow
Sep 04, 2014

Good book. Each chapter rounds itself up nicely and has enough evidence to not only support the idea, but also give the reader enough knowledge to start to formulate questions of their own. Really elaborates on how people spend their money and a little on why.

BCD2013 May 06, 2014

Divided into easily digestible short chapters, the book follows many of Mr. Ariely's entertaining experiments and studies (many using students) to direct us to surprising conclusions about human nature. The Duke professor's personal anecdotes and pithy approach make this an enjoyable and very insightful non-fiction read that might have you sharing what you've learned with everyone you know.

l
Lavenderseas
May 06, 2014

not quite done with this one, but am enjoyoung the dicection of choices mn] socially very inerestin gto see ho---who is with who and whyl inforamtiond culd ve vusedin a cold heard=ted mannere or perhaps in a kinder mor informded routel I have done some self reflecin on and s]findk id interersinfdto eshamitlwhit wourldeand what failed as unrethe lendsi of the forcesand sqshuolouyo thatdruf=ve ysk

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AbigailCurious Dec 23, 2014

AbigailCurious thinks this title is suitable for 14 years and over

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AbigailCurious Dec 23, 2014

Sexual Content: not for kids under fourteen.

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