Our beliefs often stand in the way of better decisions – because we value them too much
The great economist John Maynard Keynes reportedly once said, ‘When my information changes, I alter my conclusions. What do you do, Sir?’ As so often with such powerful quotes, there are no reliable sources that confirm Keynes really said this. But that doesn’t detract from the profound wisdom in the guidance it offers.
It summarizes very well the basis of the scientific method (not just for the dismalscience, for that matter). When a theory no longer fits the observed facts, it is discarded or adapted. Research takes place through hypotheses, which are accepted or rejected. Researchers are agnostic, and don’t care which hypothesis is right or wrong.
Unfortunately this is not always the case. Sometimes researchers are motivated by other matters than the pursuit of the truth. The chance…
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