Another Wisdom of the Crowds

by Edward Henkler on March 3, 2015

Back in late 2013, I wrote a post focused on James Surowiecki’s book, “The Wisdom of Crowds”. More recently, the Philadelphia Inquirer included an article which referenced this crowd-based phenomenon. In case you’re unfamiliar with the expression, you can go back to my previous post. The Inquirer article also provided the following explanation. “In most cases, a group of average citizens venturing good guesses is more likely to make accurate forecasts than a typical authority on a subject, especially a smugly confident one.” I love the smugly confident reference and would suggest you keep it in mind the next time a self-appointed expert is “enlightening” you.

Wisdom of the Crowds

The article describes the next step in leveraging the wisdom of the crowds. A UPenn team has been participating in a tournament which was organized by the federal Intelligence Advanced Research Projects Activity. The goal of the tournament was to improve the forecasting of critical world events. The UPenn team has far outperformed the other teams by injecting a bit of Darwin and incorporating complex algorithms. The Darwinian aspect involves an initial selection process focused on identifying the best forecasters then subsequently identifying a small group of superforecasters from the initial group. We’ll skip the complex algorithms…

You can read the full article here.

{ 0 comments… add one now }

Leave a Comment

Previous post:

Next post: