"A marvelous book… thought provoking and highly entertaining."
—Jerome Groopman, New York Times bestselling author of How Doctors Think
"Ariely not only gives us a great read; he also makes us much wiser."
—George Akerlof, 2001 Nobel Laureate in Economics
—New York Times Book Review
Why do our headaches persist after we take a one-cent aspirin but disappear when we take a fifty-cent aspirin? Why do we splurge on a lavish meal but cut coupons to save twenty-five cents on a can of soup?
When it comes to making decisions in our lives, we think we're making smart, rational choices. But are we?
In this newly revised and expanded edition of the groundbreaking New York Times bestseller, Dan Ariely refutes the common assumption that we behave in fundamentally rational ways. From drinking coffee to losing weight, from buying a car to choosing a romantic partner, we consistently overpay, underestimate, and procrastinate. Yet these misguided behaviors are neither random nor senseless. They're systematic and predictable—making us predictably irrational.
Irrational behavior is a part of human nature, but as MIT professor Ariely has discovered in 20 years of researching behavioral economics, people tend to behave irrationally in a predictable fashion. Drawing on psychology and economics, behavioral economics can show us why cautious people make poor decisions about sex when aroused, why patients get greater relief from a more expensive drug over its cheaper counterpart and why honest people may steal office supplies or communal food, but not money. According to Ariely, our understanding of economics, now based on the assumption of a rational subject, should, in fact, be based on our systematic, unsurprising irrationality. Ariely argues that greater understanding of previously ignored or misunderstood forces (emotions, relativity and social norms) that influence our economic behavior brings a variety of opportunities for reexamining individual motivation and consumer choice, as well as economic and educational policy. Ariely's intelligent, exuberant style and thought-provoking arguments make for a fascinating, eye-opening read.
For curious and business executives alike
Review: Predictably Irrational
I myself am a walking contradiction. I'm a business major with an art-based constitution who has a more than mild interest in psychology and sociology. So, naturally, after seeing the free excerpts thoughtfully entitled, A Taste of Irrationality, I was hooked. I burned through the five chapters quickly and moved on to this book, Predictably Irrational. While I do think a lot of his research is extraordinarily attune to how so many people are overlooking ethics in their own lives, I also thought that some chapters may not always apply the way he thinks. However, I think his overall goal is just to make people think about themselves and take notice of the fact that we are constantly making excuses for ourselves. I think anyone who has an interest in psychology or sociology, would like to learn concepts to help their company grow, would like to grow as a person, or would just enjoy a different view than their own; should spend their hard-earned money for the hours of satisfaction you'll get from the following pages. If you're not ready for that commitment, go check out the free excerpts and decide for yourself.
I was required to read this book for my summer reading at my high school. I ABSOLUTELY LOVED IT!! I would (and have) recommend this book to anyone.
Wow - A definite MUST READ! Excellent insight supported by real world research in an easy to read format. I read a lot and Predictably Irrational is my pick of the year.