SF – Improving Long-term Decision-Making in Tweet Time

Date/Time: February 9, 2017

Speaker: Steven Johnson, Bestselling Author & host of the PBS series “How We Got to Now”

Humans are bad at long-term decision-making – yet we need it more today than ever before. Steven Johnson, the bestselling author of ten books on science, tech, and the history of innovation including Ghost Map, Where Good Ideas Come From, and How We Got To Now, is now applying his mind toward helping drive some innovation into long-term decision-making. At February’s What’s Now: San Francisco, Steven laid out in public for the first time his thinking about his next book on long-term decision-making. Steven talked about the importance of engaging a diversity of stakeholders in collective decision-making, and referenced studies suggesting diversity trumps ability. He talked about his own experience wrestling with the pros and cons of the decision whether or not to move his family from Brooklyn to the Bay Area, and on a larger scale, discussed the extensive decision-making process that culminated in the successful raid on Osama bin Laden’s compound in 2011. Steven referenced developments in weather forecasting and randomized controlled trials in medicine, both of which rely on simulations, as examples of progress in deliberative decision-making over the last 40 years in tools and methods that help improve deliberative decision-making.