From one of the world's most highly regarded social scientists comes a seminal book on forecasting that shows, for the first time, how we can all get better at making predictions.
In Superforecasting, Tetlock and coauthor Dan Gardner offer a masterwork on prediction, drawing on decades of research and the results of a massive, government-funded forecasting tournament. The Good Judgment Project involves tens of thousands of ordinary people--including a Brooklyn filmmaker, a retired pipe installer, and a former ballroom dancer--who set out to forecast global events. Some of the volunteers have turned out to be astonishingly good. They've beaten other benchmarks, competitors, and prediction markets. They've even beaten the collective judgment of intelligence analysts with access to classified information. They are "superforecasters."
The authors show us how we can learn from this elite group. Weaving together stories of forecasting successes (the raid on Osama bin Laden's compound) and failures (the Bay of Pigs) and interviews with a range of high-level decision makers, from David Petraeus to Robert Rubin, they show that good forecasting doesn't require powerful computers or arcane methods. It involves gathering evidence from a variety of sources, learning to think probabilistically, working in teams, keeping score, and being willing to admit error and change course.
Superforecasting offers the first demonstrably effective way to improve our ability to predict the future--whether in business, finance, politics, international affairs, or daily life--and is destined to become a modern classic.
PHILIP E. TETLOCK is the Annenberg University Professor at the University of Pennsylvania, with appointments in Wharton, psychology and political science. He is co-leader of the Good Judgment Project, a multi-year forecasting study, and the author of Expert Political Judgment and (with Aaron Belkin) Counterfactual Thought Experiments in World Politics.
DAN GARDNER is a journalist and the author of Risk: The Science and Politics of Fear and Future Babble: Why Pundits are Hedgehogs and Foxes Know Best. He resides in Ottawa.
• "Tetlock's work is fascinating and important, and he and Gardner have written it up here with verve." --The Financial Times
• "Superforecasting is the most important scientific study I've ever read on prediction." --The Bloomberg View