Predictably Irrational: The Hidden Forces That Shape Our Decisions Book Cover Predictably Irrational: The Hidden Forces That Shape Our Decisions
Dan Ariely
Harper Perennial
April 27 2010

From the Publisher:

"Why do our headaches persist after we take a one-cent aspiring but disappear when we take a fifty-cent aspirin? Why do we splurge on a lavish meal but cut coupons to save twenty-five cents on a can of soup?

When it comes to making decisions in our lives, we think we're making smart, rational choices. But are we?

In this newly revised and expanded edition of the groundbreaking New York Times bestseller, Dan Ariely refutes the common assumption that we behave in fundamentally rational ways. From drinking coffee to sing weight, from buy-in a car to choosing a romantic partner, we consistently overpay, underestimate, and procrastinate. Yet this misguided behaviours are neither random nor senseless. They're systematic and predictable - making us predictably irrational."

Someone recently asked me for recommendations on Behavioural Economists, and I am kicking myself for not having remembered Dan Ariely. Fortunately, iTunes brought this amazing scientist back to the forefront of my brain. Dan – his work, as well as how he delivers a message – is a pure delight.

In Predictably Irrational: The Hidden Forces That Shape Our Decisions, Dan sheds light on just how irrational human decision-making really is. Through academic research showcasing enlightening examples, Dan presents answers to questions such as “Why we can’t make ourselves do what we want to do?” and “Why options distract us from our main objective?”  Predictably Irrational – and, indeed, all of Dan’s work – is a must read for anyone wanting to understand the foibles of human thought. 

Predictably Irrational: The Hidden Forces That Shape Our Decisions is available for purchase on Amazon.

Worthy of mention unto itself is a new documentary featuring Dan’s more recent work on (Dis)honesty. This insightful film draws from real-world examples and Dan’s continued research, exploring why humans lie – and just how slippery a slope it is when once we start to fib. In watching Dan’s talks and hearing his narration throughout the film, I was reminded of what a great voice he has for conveying information. Dan is truly an exceptional thinker, with talents not just in understanding the human mind, but finding ways to make this knowledge accessible to a wider audience.

About Author

Alicia Wanless

La Generalista is the online identity of Alicia Wanless – a researcher and practitioner of strategic communications for social change in a Digital Age. Alicia researches how we shape — and are shaped — by a changing information space. With more than a decade of experience in researching and analysing the information environment, focusing on propaganda and information warfare, Alicia conducts content and network analysis, and has developed original models for identifying and analysing digital propaganda campaigns. Alicia is currently a PhD Researcher at King’s College exploring alternative frameworks for understanding the information environment.

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