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Predictably Irrational: The Hidden Forces that Shape Our Decisions by [Dan Ariely]
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Predictably Irrational: The Hidden Forces that Shape Our Decisions Kindle Edition

4.6 out of 5 stars 3,101 ratings

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From the Back Cover

How do we think about money?
What caused bankers to lose sight of the economy?
What caused individuals to take on mortgages that were not within their means?
What irrational forces guided our decisions?
And how can we recover from an economic crisis?

In this revised and expanded edition of the New York Times and Wall Street Journal bestseller Predictably Irrational, Duke University's behavioral economist Dan Ariely explores the hidden forces that shape our decisions, including some of the causes responsible for the current economic crisis. Bringing a much-needed dose of sophisticated psychological study to the realm of public policy, Ariely offers his own insights into the irrationalities of everyday life, the decisions that led us to the financial meltdown of 2008, and the general ways we get ourselves into trouble.

Blending common experiences and clever experiments with groundbreaking analysis, Ariely demonstrates how expectations, emotions, social norms, and other invisible, seemingly illogical forces skew our reasoning abilities. As he explains, our reliance on standard economic theory to design personal, national, and global policies may, in fact, be dangerous. The mistakes that we make as individuals and institutions are not random, and they can aggregate in the market--with devastating results. In light of our current economic crisis, the consequences of these systematic and predictable mistakes have never been clearer.

Packed with new studies and thought-provoking responses to readers' questions and comments, this revised and expanded edition of Predictably Irrational will change the way we interact with the world--from the small decisions we make in our own lives to the individual and collective choices that shape our economy.

--This text refers to the hardcover edition.

Review

'For anyone interested in marketing - either as a practioner or victim - this is unmissable reading. If only more researchers could write like this, the world would be a better place.' Financial Times

‘A marvelous book that is both thought provoking and highly entertaining, ranging from the power of placebos to the pleasures of Pepsi. Ariely unmasks the subtle but powerful tricks that our minds play on us, and shows us how we can prevent being fooled.’ Jerome Groopman, New York Times bestselling author of How Doctors Think

‘PREDICTABLY IRRATIONAL is wildly original. It shows why—much more often than we usually care to admit—humans make foolish, and sometimes disastrous, mistakes. Ariely not only gives us a great read; he also makes us much wiser.’ George Akerlof, Nobel Laureate in Economics, 2001 Koshland Professor of Economics, University of California at Berkeley

--This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

Product details

  • ASIN : B002RI9QJE
  • Publisher : HarperCollins; Expanded, Revised edition (6 March 2009)
  • Language : English
  • File size : 845 KB
  • Text-to-Speech : Enabled
  • Enhanced typesetting : Enabled
  • X-Ray : Enabled
  • Word Wise : Enabled
  • Print length : 267 pages
  • Customer Reviews:
    4.6 out of 5 stars 3,101 ratings
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4.6 out of 5 stars
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Top reviews from other countries

Alok Kejriwal
5.0 out of 5 stars Just get this book. That's it.
Reviewed in India on 11 August 2019
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5.0 out of 5 stars Just get this book. That's it.
Reviewed in India on 11 August 2019
Predictably Irrational - Book review.

GET THIS BOOK. That's it.

A BRILLIANT read. Irrespective of what you do, you must read this textbook of human behaviour & how amazingly complex our minds are decisions are.

A sample of what's inside:

Consider an experiment on 100 students based on an old subscription model of The Economist magazine, offering:

Option 1 - a web subscription for $59

Option 2 - a print subscription for $125

Option 3 - a web & print subscription for $125

16 students chose Option 1

0 students chose Option 2 (obvious!!)

84 students chose Option 3.

Revenue earned = $11,444.

The author then removed Option 2 (Print sub for $125) Results:

68 students chose Option 1

32 students went for Option 3Revenue earned = $8,012

What could have possibly changed their minds? It was the mere presence of THE DECOY (2nd option) that made them buy MORE expensive options in the 1st experiment & less in the 2nd experiment.

The book is replete with such experiments. Also, real-life examples of human behaviour when it comes to product pricing (including 'anchoring'), buying houses, cheating, Starbucks Upsells, what Ford learned from Toyota about Car servicing and too many brilliant quotes.
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Susan Stepney
5.0 out of 5 stars Several of the examples will be useful to help avoid faulty reasoning in certain cases
Reviewed in the United Kingdom on 2 January 2019
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10 people found this helpful
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Nick Michelioudakis
5.0 out of 5 stars A Review - for Educators
Reviewed in the United Kingdom on 15 July 2016
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5.0 out of 5 stars A Review - for Educators
Reviewed in the United Kingdom on 15 July 2016
MIT Professor Dan Ariely needs no introduction; he is one of the biggest names in the field of Behavioural Economics. Ariely studies the way we think, decide and operate – and in chapter after chapter he shows that we are far from being the rational creatures we think we are!
In one of the amazing studies in the book he shows for instance that the way we ‘frame’ something (p. 41) often determines how others are going to take it (remember Tom Sawyer and how he got his friends to paint that wall? For classroom management purposes, this is crucial; if we introduce activities saying ‘Now, this may hurt a little...’ chances are students are going to feel the pain!)
This leads to the hugely important subject – expectations: quick Q: would you like a beer with a drop of balsamic vinegar in it? (p. 159) A: It depends on whether you know it in advance or not! If you do, chances are you are going to dislike it. Expectations colour perceptions. How many times has this prejudiced us against certain students?
Ariely’s interests range from beverages to education. Here is another Q for you: which students have better results: those who are free to choose their own deadlines, or those where the professor ‘democratically’ decides for everyone? Incredibly, it is the latter! (p. 115) This finding may go against our cherished beliefs, but in fact it ties in very smoothly with notions of ‘ego depletion’ (Baumeister). The very process of deciding exhausts us, with the result that we are both more stressed and produce poorer-quality work.
Ariely writes in the simple, effortless and straightforward style that you find among people with a real command of their subject. Rather than bombarding the reader with studies and facts, he goes through each experiment in detail, ensuring that the reader manages to grasp the key concept in all its fine details. He then goes on to consider the possible applications of the findings in various fields of life – not just work. Yet what I like best about this book is that he also uses examples from his own life – sometimes funny, sometimes poignant.
OK – now here is one last idea from the book: a little ‘conjuring trick’ for shamelessly manipulating students (pp 9 – 10): You give them a choice for homework: they can read a long article or they can write a short essay. But you really want them to write that essay. Piece of cake – you give them a third option; writing an even longer text! Now, nobody is going to choose that, right? Yes, but because the short essay is better than the long one, students also assume it’s preferable to the article too! Brilliant!! :-)
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10 people found this helpful
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Tony James Slater
5.0 out of 5 stars Brain-exploding potential!
Reviewed in the United Kingdom on 17 July 2015
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11 people found this helpful
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MattB88
5.0 out of 5 stars A fantastic insight into the human mind
Reviewed in the United Kingdom on 15 July 2020
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