My rating: 4 of 5 stars
We think we are the paragons of rationality; that we have valid and logical reasons to makes decisions the way we do, to have opinions the way we have, and to choose what we do. Kahneman’s research might be hard to digest but it is what it is and its end message is simple! we are far more biased that we think we are! Our decisions are easily influenced, our perception, the memories we have, the experience that we think we remember are but imperfect. If you wish to learn about the human biases, the way our brain tricks us, the way our senses and emotions deceive/influences us, you will greatly enjoy this book.
Overall, it is a very pleasant book with lots of key insights from psychology, economics and statistics. I enjoyed the approach of Kahneman. I was happy to find that time was dedicated to explain statistical concepts like Bayesian inferences, regression to the mean. Furthermore lessons from economics such as the utility theory being dissected and the history of behavioural economics taking shape was definitely pleasing to read and learn. Even the explanation on algorithm, predictions and base rates was a delightful surprise. The book definitely exceeded my expectations in that sense.
After reading this book, I can understand why Daniel Kahneman won a Nobel Prize. Not only is he a brilliant and curious man, but his contribution into understanding the human psyche while challenging existing current model is deeply significant. Anyone who has an interest in social sciences, academia, researches, experiments, and the human nature will enjoy and value this book and its insights.
I am refraining from a 5 stars only because I would have enjoyed details further especially when it comes to the methodology such as with eye tracking and the way the algorithm mentioned worked or were created as well as access to some of the data sets for me to play around. I think this book had enough insights and opportunity to include some hands on activities for the reader.
Definitely a book I would recommend to read together with:
a. Philip Tetlock’s “Superforecasting: the art and science of prediction” – which I already have and,
b. Cass Sustein and Richard Thaler’s “Nudge: Improving Decisions about Health, Wealth, and Happiness” -which I am now curious to read.