Information Sampling and Adaptive Cognition

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Klaus Fiedler, Peter Juslin
Cambridge University Press, 2006 - Psychology - 488 pages
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A 'sample' is not only a concept from statistics that has penetrated common sense but also a metaphor that has inspired much research and theorizing in current psychology. The sampling approach emphasizes the selectivity and the biases that are inherent in the samples of information input with which judges and decision makers are fed. As environmental samples are rarely random, or representative of the world as a whole, decision making calls for censorship and critical evaluation of the data given. However, even the most intelligent decision makers tend to behave like 'nive intuitive statisticians': quite sensitive to the data given but uncritical concerning the source of the data. Thus, the vicissitudes of sampling information in the environment together with the failure to monitor and control sampling effects adequately provide a key to re-interpreting findings obtained in the last two decades of research on judgment and decision making.

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About the author (2006)

Klaus Fiedler is Professor of Psychology at University of Heidelberg in Germany. Among his main research interests are cognitive social psychology, language and communication, social memory, inductive cognitive processes in judgment and decision making, and computer modeling of the human mind. Professor Fiedler was the winner of the 2000 Leibniz Award.

Peter Juslin is Professor of Psychology at Uppsala University in Sweden. He received the Brunswik New Scientist Award in 1994 and the Oscar's Award at Uppsala University in 1996 for young distinguished scientists. He has published a large number of scientific papers in many journals including many articles in the main APA-journals such as Psychology Review.

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