Top critical review
15 people found this helpful
This could seriously add to your health, wealth and well being - but it is a bit repetitive and optimistic...
on 9 June 2014
We don't understand risk very well is one of Gigerenzer's central theses. Another is that in situations of uncertainty simple rules are better than complex ones we can't understand. - or that would be fine if only we had far more information. (So, for example invest your money by splitting it equally between a number of investments I'd different kind. Or keep leverage to 10 per cent.) a third thesis is that in decision taking and leadership, we should trust our gut instincts. A fourth is that our fear instincts are geared to our evolutionary past with their focus on things like spiders and 'dread events' where a lot of oeople die at the same time such as 9/11.
This is all persuasive and I learned a good deal from this book. That relates particularly to understanding risk and the role that presentation through natural frequencies and 'icon boxes' and the like can play. The book is also excellent as a guide to understanding medical risks.
If I didn't find it griping throughout, I think there are two main reasons. First it's a bit repetitive, especially when it comes to the North American healthcare system and its shortcomings. Secondly it's a bit optimistic about the impacts of education in risk understanding and in catching students young - pre adolescence. I just can't believe thus will turn out to be, for example, a way to stop young people texting and driving, as Gigerenzer hopes...