Author(s): Dan Gardner
In 2008, as the price of oil surged above $140 a barrel, experts said it would soon hit $200; a few months later it plunged to $30. In 1967, they said the USSR would have one of the fastest-growing economies in the year 2000; in 2000, the USSR did not exist. In 1911, it was pronounced that there would be no more wars in Europe.
Let's face it: experts are about as accurate as dart-throwing monkeys. And yet every day we ask them to predictÊeverything from the weather to the likelihood ofÊa terrorist attack. Future Babble is the first book to examine this phenomenon,Êdemonstrating Êwhy our brains yearn for certainty about the future, why we are attracted to those who predict it confidently, and why it's so easy for us to ignore the trail of outrageously wrong forecasts.
In this fast-paced, example-packed, sometimes darkly hilarious book, bestselling author Dan Gardner shows howÊpundits who are more famous are less accurate Ñ and the average expert is no more accurate than a flipped coin. Gardner also draws on current research in cognitive psychology, political science, and behavioural economics to discover something quite reassuring: The future is always uncertain, but the end is not always near.
Dan Gardner is a prize-winning Canadian journalist and author of Risk: The Science and Politics of Fear (Scribe 2008). He is a senior writer and columnist at the Ottawa Citizen, a popular public speaker, and holds a law degree and master's in history. Dan Gardner specialises in criminal justice and other investigative issues and previously worked as a senior policy adviser to the premier and the minister of education before turning to journalism in 1997.