Predictably Irrational: The Hidden Forces that Shape Our Decisions Paperback – 5 Mar 2009
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'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
From the Inside Flap
A marvelous book... thought provoking and highly entertaining."
-Jerome Groopman, New York Times bestselling author of How Doctors Think
"Ariely not only gives us a great read; he also makes us much wiser."
-George Akerlof, 2001 Nobel Laureate in Economics
-New York Times Book Review
Behavioral economist and New York Times bestselling author Dan Ariely offers a much-needed take on the irrational decisions that led to our current economic crisis. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
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Top Customer Reviews
This is a book for the thinking person who is interested in extending his understanding of the way the world functions. It isn't pop psychology and it won't change anybody's life. It is a little more serious than that, but it is still a fairly easy and entertaining read. I felt that the writer must be a good teacher and a likeable person.
Behavioural economics is proving a rich seam for authors, but very few are as entertaining as Dan Ariely. He has an engaging writing style and most of the experiments he recounts are his own, even the delightfully wacky ones, such as giving out free beer or asking young men to complete a questionnaire when sexually aroused. Fortunately, this last one was carried out in the privacy of their own rooms.
will highly recommend both the seller and the book itself - definitely worth a read. explains a lot from the crazy and illogical things that we see or do every day.
They usually consist of asking two or more differently informed groups of students questions about something. Actually, sometimes the author is a bit vague about the exact experimental conditions, how bias was eliminated from the experiment (particularly with respect to how questions were framed [what language was used] and how the participants were chosen [a few samples were decidedly small]) and how the many variables were isolated and controlled. So in that sense we must take Ariely's word for it. Also, he often vaguely summarises the results of these experiments with words such as "more than" and "most" instead of giving figures. If he were giving a lecture I would have asked him to clarify quite a few points. But all in all I think that this was an interesting book albeit a short one. It is a slim volume and the typeface is quite large. I'm a slow reader and I read it comfortably over two days.
Here's the quick comparison:
- Ariely's book is pure pop science. Short, entertaining, 1st person, occasionally irritating anecdotal style, but you quickly get the message. However, if you're reading it now (2012), you may have already heard the same thing elsewhere.
Personal view: I found it too anecdotal, and too lightweight.
- Kahneman's book is the real deal. This is the bible of behavioural economics. Everything you need to know, written with clarity and detail, but also enough stories, short exercises and counterintuitive conclusions to keep you turning the pages.
Personal view: Long and challenging, but very rich and rewarding.
And the results are indeed startling in some cases; I particularly liked his analysis of how price has a real and measurable effect on the placebo effect (until we know the truth about the placebo we've taken!), and his openness to include a reflective discussion into the merits associated with placebo treatments.
Prof. Ariely isn't afraid of tackling the ethical and moral implications of his findings however, and I found myself nodding in agreement, and sometime frowning with stormy thoughts as I tried to grapple with the knock-on effect of what he has so eruditely explained in the book.
He covers a wide range of topics and findings, and I'm already re-reading parts of the book more carefully having gone through once at speed.
This is a great introduction to behavioural psychology, and it fits nicely alongside Chialdini's "Influence: The Psychology of Persuasion".
Most Recent Customer Reviews
Ariely explains, "My goal, by the end of this book, is to help you fundamentally rethink what makes you and the people around you tick. Read morePublished 19 days ago by SirChutney
Came here ages ago after a TED talk. I really enjoyed this book and found it a fun read that I could dip in an out of.Published 2 months ago by luna
The book starts well and is really engaging, but the author shows his misogyny and prejudice for both kink and LGBT people as the book progresses. Just Uurgh.Published 2 months ago by Jo
I actually found this book to have a bit more if a sincere implication after having just finished reading the lucifer effect. Read morePublished 4 months ago by luke
Dan Ariely is a genius! His insights based on experiments are a guide for everyday decisions and traps. Read morePublished 4 months ago by pigivardicou