recentpopularlog in

jerryking : evidence_based   8

Opinion | The Surprising Benefits of Relentlessly Auditing Your Life
May 25, 2019 | The New York Times | By Amy Westervelt, a journalist and podcaster.

"The unexamined life is not worth living" is a famous dictum apparently uttered by Socrates at his trial for impiety and corrupting youth, for which he was subsequently sentenced to death, as described in Plato's Apology (38a5–6).
analytics  data  evidence_based  happiness  housework  marriage  note_taking  patterns  quality_of_life  quantitative  quantified_self  record-keeping  relationships  relentlessness  self-assessment  self-examination  self-improvement  spreadsheets 
may 2019 by jerryking
Da Vinci code: what the tech age can learn from Leonardo
April 26, 2019 | Financial Times | by Ian Goldin.

While Leonardo is recognised principally for his artistic genius, barely a dozen paintings can be unequivocally attributed to him. In life, he defined himself not as an artist but as an engineer and architect......History does not repeat itself, but it rhymes. The Renaissance catapulted Italy from the Medieval age to become the most advanced place on Earth. Then, as now, change brought immense riches to some and growing anxiety and disillusionment to others. We too live in an age of accelerating change, one that has provoked its own fierce backlash. What lessons can we draw from Leonardo and his time to ensure that we not only benefit from a new flourishing, but that progress will be sustained? When we think of the Renaissance, we think of Florence. Leonardo arrived in the city in the mid 1460s, and as a teenager was apprenticed to the painter Verrocchio. The city was already an incubator for ideas. At the centre of the European wool trade, by the late 14th century Florence had become the home of wealthy merchants including the Medicis, who were bankers to the Papal Court. The city’s rapid advances were associated with the information and ideas revolution that defines the Renaissance. Johann Gutenberg had used moveable type to publish his Bible in the early 1450s, and between the time of Leonardo’s birth in 1452 and his 20th birthday, some 15m books were printed, more than all the European scribes had produced over the previous 1,500 years.

..as Leonardo knew, and the Silicon Valley techno-evangelists too often neglect, information revolutions don’t only allow good ideas to flourish. They also provide a platform for dangerous ideas. The Zuckerberg information revolution can pose a similar threat to that of Gutenberg.

In the battle of ideas, populists are able to mobilise the disaffected more effectively than cerebral scientists, decently disciplined innovators and the moderate and often silent majority. For progress to prevail, evidence-based, innovative and reasoned thinking must triumph.
.....Genius thrived in the Renaissance because of the supportive ecosystem that aided the creation and dissemination of knowledge — which then was crushed by the fearful inquisitions. Today, tolerance and evidence-based argument are again under threat.
accelerated_lifecycles  architecture  broad-based_scientific_enquiry  capitalization  cross-disciplinary  cross-pollination  curiosity  dangerous_ideas  digital_economy  diversity  engineering  evidence_based  Florence  genius  globalization  human_potential  ideas  immigrants  Italy  industry_expertise  Johan_Gutenberg  lessons_learned  Leonardo_da_Vinci  Medicis  medieval  physical_place  polymaths  observations  Renaissance  Renaissance_Man  Silicon_Valley  silo_mentality  tolerance  unevenly_distributed  visionaries 
april 2019 by jerryking
Drug-funding sob stories make for good reading, but we need hard evidence to set public policy
Mar. 16 2014 | The Globe and Mail | ANDRÉ PICARD.

the key question in public policy is always: What else could be done with the money that would provide more bang for the buck?

To fund or not fund drugs is not an easy discussion to have. But it is a necessary one. As compelling as the stories of suffering children may be, we have to make decisions based on evidence. We also owe it to ourselves to negotiate firmly with drug-makers.

We cannot continue to fall prey to emotional blackmail, no matter how much the headlines sting.
no_sob_stories  public_policy  André_Picard  pharmaceutical_industry  orphan_drugs  disease  opportunity_costs  evidence_based  emotional_blackmail  evidence  difficult_conversations 
march 2014 by jerryking
Making Sense of Ambiguous Evidence
September 2008 | HBR | A Conversation with Documentary Filmmaker Errol Morris.

The information that top managers receive is rarely unfiltered. Unpopular opinions are censored. Partisan views are veiled as objective arguments. Honest mistakes are made. The manager is then left to sort it all out and come to a wise conclusion.

Few people know how to get an accurate read on a situation like documentarian Errol Morris. He is the award-winning director of such films as The Thin Blue Line and this year’s Standard Operating Procedure, an exploration of the elusive truth behind the infamous photographs taken at Abu Ghraib prison. The Guardian has ranked him among the world’s top 10 directors, crediting him with “a forensic mind” and “a painter’s eye.”

In this article, Morris talks with HBR’s Lisa Burrell about how he sorts through ambiguous evidence and contradictory views to arrive at the real story. “I don’t believe in the postmodern notion that there are different kinds of truth,” he says. “There is one objective reality, period.” Getting to it requires keeping your mind open to all kinds of evidence—not just the parts that fit with your first impressions or developing opinions—and, often, far more investigation than one would think.

If finding the truth is a matter of perseverance, convincing people of it is something of an art, one with which Morris has had much experience not only as a documentarian but also as a highly sought-after director of TV ads for companies like Apple, Citibank, Adidas, and Toyota. He holds up John Kerry’s 2004 bid for the U.S. presidency as a cautionary tale: Kerry struck voters as inauthentic when he emphasized only his military service and failed to account for his subsequent war protest. Morris would have liked to interview him speaking in his own words—natural, unscripted material—so that his humanity, which seemed to get lost in the campaign, could emerge.
anecdotal  HBR  executive_management  CEOs  contradictions  information  information_flows  evidence_based  objective_reality  information_gaps  authenticity  sense-making  ambiguities  uncertainty  persuasion  forensics  postmodern  filmmakers  documentaries  judgment  cautionary_tales 
august 2012 by jerryking
Some speculative truth about Canada’s new gun crime - The Globe and Mail
Jul. 20 2012 | The Globe and Mail | James Sheptycki.

So we have a poisonous mixture: A pistolized culture of masculinity. A socio-economic structure of exclusion. An illicit opportunity structure in the market for illegal drugs. And rising levels of gun availability on the streets.

There is probably even more to it than that, since society’s reactions are often one-sided. Some people advocate cracking down on the drug economy. Some advocate drug decriminalization. Some say banning guns or bullets will work, or that we need stiffer penalties. Others want better social programs.

These policy struggles, playing out in the context of fiscal crisis, are most often discussed in hyper-masculine terms. Looking for the cheapest bang for the buck, we end up “combatting gangs” or “fighting crime” while going to “war on drugs.”

These amount to attempts at repression. But repression does not solve problems; it displaces them. This suggests that the solutions become part of the problem.

This issue is extremely complex, but these speculations are the start of a plausible explanation to what has been taking place in Canada for some time. But they are only a start.

There is a demand for quick and easy solutions, and the solutions had better be cost-effective and inexpensive. There is impatience when the response from academic criminologists is for further research.

But in the face of such complexity, and to test our understanding, Canadians need to demand evidence-based policymaking. Rationality and reason are required, as well as political will. Gut instinct is no good.
Toronto  violence  evidence_based  research  criminality  masculinity  illicit  drugs  economy  social_exclusion  guns  gut_feelings  policymaking 
july 2012 by jerryking
How Evidence-Based Management Pays Off - NYTimes.com
By JEFFREY PFEFFER AND ROBERT SUTTON
Published: September 3, 2011
evidence_based  decision_making 
september 2011 by jerryking
FT.com / Management - When to turn a blind eye to the facts
September 20 2010 | Financial Times | By Philip Delves Broughton.
.....For the men and women fighting to stop the leak, there were the messy, practical challenges to be met, and decisions to be made based on the evidence. And then there were those who made the decision early to pound away at this latest example of “Big Oil” gone wild.

President Barack Obama was caught between the two, trying to make decisions based on the complex set of facts, while others claimed to know exactly what decisions should be made, and compiled the evidence accordingly.

Businesses are often caught in the same trap. Ideally, you want to base your decisions on sound evidence. But often, managers make a decision then rustle up the evidence to support it. As Peter Tingling and Michael Brydon of Simon Fraser University wrote recently in the MIT Sloan Management Review, it is the difference between evidence-based decision making and its ugly sibling, decision-based evidence making......
Profs Tingling and Brydon found that evidence is used by managers in three different ways: to make; inform; or support a decision. If it is used to make a decision, it means the decision arises directly from the evidence. If it is used to inform a decision, evidence is mixed in with intuition or bargaining to lead to a decision. If it is used to support a decision, it means the evidence is simply a means to justify a decision already made. They also found that evidence is often shaped by subordinates to meet what they perceive to be the expectations of their bosses.

There are two dangers to letting decisions trump evidence. The first is when decision making is simply ill-informed. Ideally, a decision that contradicts the evidence is an inspired hunch, formed by experience, like Nelson’s. In the worst case, it is the product of ignorant bias.

The second danger is that once your employees know that you, as a manager, are more interested in finding evidence to fit your conclusions rather than seeking out truth, it infects a company with demoralising and destructive cynicism.
......In other companies, however, the cult of data-driven decision making leaves so little room for personal beliefs that people just tailor evidence to fit pre-made decisions......What is a manager to do? How do you encourage the use of data, while leaving room for the occasional inspired decision? One solution is to be more flexible in how you categorise decisions. Not all will require the same degree of evidence.

Another is to weigh the costs of gathering evidence. Is it always worth it? If not, don’t fudge it for appearance’s sake. Admit that you are trusting your well-honed instincts.
evidence_based  Octothorpe_Software  Philip_Delves_Broughton  decision_making  Peter_Tingling  environmental_disasters  Deepwater_Horizon  evidence  oil_spills  oil_industry  fact_patterns 
september 2010 by jerryking

Copy this bookmark:





to read