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We humans make judgments about a staggering variety of topics. These include which medical condition is the correct diagnosis for your symptoms, whether a particular defendant is guilty of some crime or whether a particular political candidate will win an election—to name a few of countless examples. But how accurate are the judgments we all make, and how can they get better? This book synthesizes interdisciplinary research about these questions into one volume. In doing so, it uniquely draws on insights from fields as diverse as medicine, political judgment, cross-cultural psychology, evolutionary history and the heuristics and biases research program. Consequently, the book also enables readers concerned with judgmental accuracy in one field to benefit from the insights in others. Moreover, the author introduces an emerging field of research: empirical epistemology or normative cognitive science. The book lastly articulates a set of recommendations—recommendations aiming to improve our judgment, our decision-making and ultimately our lives.
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About the Author
John Wilcox is an epistemologist and cognitive scientist at Stanford University. There, he was awarded the highly selective Stanford Interdisciplinary Graduate Fellowship to complete his PhD in psychology and philosophy, including experimental and conceptual work on the accuracy of human judgment. He also holds bachelor’s and master’s degrees in philosophy, statistics and political science from the University of Auckland, where he was awarded the senior scholar award in the Faculty of Arts and the first-place prize in political studies and international relations. He has lectured and taught for numerous courses in philosophy and social science at Stanford University, the University of Melbourne and the University of Auckland. Aside from his teaching, he has also worked on various projects to improve reasoning at the University of Melbourne. His single and co-author publications have appeared in various academic outlets, including the Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy.