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Archive of posts filed under the Decision Theory category.

On deck this week

Mon: Ripped from the pages of a George Pelecanos novel Tues: “We can keep debating this after 11 years, but I’m sure we all have much more pressing things to do (grants? papers? family time? attacking 11-year-old papers by former classmates? guitar practice?)” Wed: What do I say when I don’t have much to say? […]

The 3 Stages of Busy

Last week I ran into a younger colleague who said he had a conference deadline that week and could we get together next week, maybe? So I contacted him on the weekend and asked if he was free. He responded: This week quickly got booked after last week’s NIPS deadline. So we’re meeting in another […]

On deck this week

Mon: Richard Feynman and the tyranny of measurement Tues: A bad definition of statistical significance from the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, Effective Health Care Program Wed: Ta-Nehisi Coates, David Brooks, and the “street code” of journalism Thurs: Flamebait: “Mathiness” in economics and political science Fri: 45 years ago in the sister blog […]

On deck for the rest of the summer and beginning of fall

Here’s some summer reading for you. The schedule may change because of the insertion of topical material, but this is the basic plan: Richard Feynman and the tyranny of measurement A bad definition of statistical significance from the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, Effective Health Care Program Ta-Nehisi Coates, David Brooks, and the […]

Annals of Spam

I received the following email with subject line, “Andrew, just finished ‘Foreign language skills …’”: Andrew, Just finished http://andrewgelman.com/2010/12/24/foreign_languag/ This leads to the silliness of considering foreign language skills as a purely positional good or as a method for selecting students, while forgetting the direct benefits of being able to communicate in various ways with […]

On deck this week

Mon: Don’t do the Wilcoxon Tues: Survey weighting and regression modeling Wed: Prior information, not prior belief Thurs: Draw your own graph! Fri: Measurement is part of design Sat: Annals of Spam Sun: “17 Baby Names You Didn’t Know Were Totally Made Up”

Inauthentic leadership? Development and validation of methods-based criticism

Thomas Basbøll writes: I need some help with a critique of a paper that is part of the apparently growing retraction scandal in leadership studies. Here’s Retraction Watch. The paper I want to look at is here: “Authentic Leadership: Development and Validation of a Theory-Based Measure” By F. O. Walumbwa, B. J. Avolio, W. L. […]

Economists betting on replication

Mark Patterson writes: A bunch of folks are collaborating on a project to replicate 18 experimental studies published in prominent Econ journals (mostly American Economic Review, a few Quarterly Journal of Economics). This is already pretty exciting, but the really cool bit is they’re opening a market (with real money) to predict which studies will […]

On deck this week

Mon: Discreteland and Continuousland Tues: “There are many studies showing . . .” Wed: An Excel add-in for regression analysis Thurs: Unreplicable Fri: Economists betting on replication Sat: Inauthentic leadership? Development and validation of methods-based criticism Sun: “Physical Models of Living Systems”

Humility needed in decision-making

Brian MacGillivray and Nick Pidgeon write: Daniel Gilbert maintains that people generally make bad decisions on risk issues, and suggests that communication strategies and education programmes would help (Nature 474, 275–277; 2011). This version of the deficit model pervades policy-making and branches of the social sciences. In this model, conflicts between expert and public perceptions […]

On deck this week

Mon: God is in every leaf of every probability puzzle Tues: Where does Mister P draw the line? Wed: Recently in the sister blog Thurs: Humility needed in decision-making Fri: “Why should anyone believe that? Why does it make sense to model a series of astronomical events as though they were spins of a roulette […]

On deck this week

Mon: Hey, what’s up with that x-axis?? Tues: A question about race based stratification Wed: Our new column in the Daily Beast Thurs: Irwin Shaw: “I might mistrust intellectuals, but I’d mistrust nonintellectuals even more.” Fri: An amusing window into folk genetics Sat: “Faith means belief in something concerning which doubt is theoretically possible.” — […]

“When more data steer us wrong: replications with the wrong dependent measure perpetuate erroneous conclusions”

Evan Heit sent in this article with Caren Rotello and Chad Dubé: There is a replication crisis in science, to which psychological research has not been immune: Many effects have proven uncomfortably difficult to reproduce. Although the reliability of data is a serious concern, we argue that there is a deeper and more insidious problem […]

In which a complete stranger offers me a bet

Piotr Mitros wrote to Deb and me: I read, with pleasure, your article about the impossibility of biasing a coin. I’m curious as to whether researchers believe what they write. Would you be willing to place some form of iterated bet? For example: I provide a two-sided coin and a table. The table looks like […]

Born-open data

Jeff Rouder writes: Although many researchers agree that scientific data should be open to scrutiny to ferret out poor analyses and outright fraud, most raw data sets are not available on demand. There are many reasons researchers do not open their data, and one is technical. It is often time consuming to prepare and archive […]

On deck this week

Mon: Because there is no observable certainty other than the existence of thought Tues: Michael LaCour in 20 years Wed: Born-open data Thurs: You can crush us, you can bruise us, yes, even shoot us, but oh—not a pie chart! Fri: In which a complete stranger offers me a bet Sat: Statistics Be Sun: “When […]

“The psychologists are getting a hard time for doing what they do, whereas people doing real harm to society are happily roaming around like free range chicken”

Shravan Vasishth writes: At least people like Amy Cuddy are just doing bullshit research that’s harmless (after all, raising your arms up high before an interview is unlikely to hurt society much). But check out this MIT “Professor” explaining the “statistically significant” autism-vaccine “connection”: She even takes a notorious, fraudulent, and retracted Lancet article as […]

On deck this week

Mon: “The psychologists are getting a hard time for doing what they do, whereas people doing real harm to society are happily roaming around like free range chicken” Tues: The posterior distribution of the likelihood ratio as a summary of evidence Wed: “Best Linear Unbiased Prediction” is exactly like the Holy Roman Empire Thurs: Applied […]

Should you get the blood transfusion?

Gur Huberman writes: Apropos Ethics & Logistic Regression, the piece you wrote with Madigan: In late 2001 I [Gur] broke my femur trying to rollerblade with my daughter. (No IQ award for that.) I had surgery and my recovery was slow. Every time I tried to get on crutches I’d collapse and faint. Diagnosis: Anemia. […]

A quick one

Fabio Rojas asks: Should I do Bonferroni adjustments? Pros? Cons? Do you have a blog post on this? Most social scientists don’t seem to be aware of this issue. My short answer is that if you’re fitting mutlilevel models, I don’t think you need multiple comparisons adjustments; see here.