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The wisdom of many in one mind : improving individual judgments with dialectical bootstrapping

Herzog, S. M. and Hertwig, R.. (2009) The wisdom of many in one mind : improving individual judgments with dialectical bootstrapping. Psychological Science, 20 (2). pp. 231-237.

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Abstract

The "wisdom of crowds" in making judgments about the future or other unknown events is well established. The average quantitative estimate of a group of individuals is consistently more accurate than the typical estimate, and is sometimes even the best estimate. Although individuals' estimates may be riddled with errors, averaging them boosts accuracy because both systematic and random errors tend to cancel out across individuals. We propose exploiting the power of averaging to improve estimates generated by a single person by using an approach we call dialectical bootstrapping. Specifically, it should be possible to reduce a person's error by averaging his or her first estimate with a second one that harks back to somewhat different knowledge. We derive conditions under which dialectical bootstrapping fosters accuracy and provide an empirical demonstration that its benefits go beyond reliability gains. A single mind can thus simulate the wisdom of many.
Faculties and Departments:07 Faculty of Psychology > Departement Psychologie > Ehemalige Einheiten Psychologie > Cognitive and Decision Sciences (Hertwig)
UniBasel Contributors:Hertwig, Ralph and Herzog, Stefan M
Item Type:Article, refereed
Article Subtype:Research Article
Bibsysno:Link to catalogue
Publisher:Blackwell
ISSN:0956-7976
Note:Publication type according to Uni Basel Research Database: Journal article
Language:English
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Last Modified:30 Oct 2017 13:17
Deposited On:22 Mar 2012 13:53

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