[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: The relationship between performance and ability is a central concern in the social sciences: Are the most successful much more able than others, and are failures unskilled? Prior research has shown that noise and self-reinforcing dynamics make performance unpredictable and lead to a weak association between ability and performance. Here we show that the same mechanisms that generate unpredictability imply that extreme performances can be relatively uninformative about ability. As a result, the highest performers may not have the highest expected ability and should not be imitated or praised. We show that whether higher performance indicates higher ability depends on whether extreme performance could be achieved by skill or requires luck.
Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences 05/2012; 109(24):9331-6.
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Short-term load forecasts are needed for the efficient management of power systems. Although weather-based modeling is common, univariate models can be useful when the lead time of interest is less than one day. A class of univariate methods that has performed well with intraday data is exponential smoothing. This paper considers five recently developed exponentially weighted methods that have not previously been used for load forecasting. These methods include several exponential smoothing formulations, as well as methods using discount weighted regression, cubic splines, and singular value decomposition (SVD). In addition, this paper presents a new SVD-based exponential smoothing formulation. Using British and French half-hourly load data, these methods are compared for point forecasting up to one day ahead. Although the new SVD-based approach showed some potential, the best performing method was a previously developed exponential smoothing method. A second empirical study showed the better of the univariate methods outperforming a weather-based method up to about five hours ahead, with a combination of these methods producing the best results overall.
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Academic economists perform an important function in advising politicians and state bureaucrats, lending them epistemological authority. This creates a challenge of institutional design and of professional vocation, of how these experts can combine their commitment to scientific analysis with their commitment towards their governmental patrons. This article examines the case of anti-trust economics, in which government economists are encouraged to remain as academically engaged as possible, so that their advice will be - or appear to be - unpolluted by political or bureaucratic pressures. Yet this ideal is constantly compromised by the fact that the economists are nevertheless government employees, working beneath lawyers. Max Weber's concept of a 'vocation' is adopted to explore this tension, and his two lectures, 'Science as a Vocation' and 'Politics as a Vocation' are read side by side, to consider this core dilemma of academic policy advisors.
British Journal of Sociology 06/2011; 62(2):304-23.
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Individuals tend to select again alternatives about which they have positive impressions and to avoid alternatives about which they have negative impressions. Here we show how this sequential sampling feature of the information acquisition process leads to the emergence of an illusory correlation between estimates of the attributes of multi-attribute alternatives. The sign of the illusory correlation depends on how the decision maker combines estimates in making her sampling decisions. A positive illusory correlation emerges when evaluations are compensatory or disjunctive and a negative illusory correlation can emerge when evaluations are conjunctive. Our theory provides an alternative explanation for illusory correlations that does not rely on biased information processing nor selective attention to different pieces of information. It provides a new perspective on several well-established empirical phenomena such as the 'Halo' effect in personality perception, the relation between proximity and attitudes, and the in-group out-group bias in stereotype formation.
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: This article analyzes the concept of complexity from an epistemological point of view, drawing a distinction between complexity (contextual complexity) and complication (procedural complexity). This article explores some organizational consequences of increasing complexity in organizational environments as management must cope with complexity at three different levels — internal, transactional environment, and contextual environment. The authors propose a model of managerial competencies in terms of complexity requirements and overview some consequences of this model for organizational learning and competence building processes.
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: The purpose of this paper is to assess the choice between adopting a monetary base or an interest rate setting instrument to maintain financial stability. Our results suggest that the interest rate instrument is preferable, since during times of a panic or financial crisis the Central Bank automatically satisfies the increased demand for money. Thus, it prevents sharp losses in asset values and enhanced asset volatility.
[Show abstract][Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Abstract Commenting on an analysis of the Financial Times MBA rankings, consideration is given to the emergence of an interest in such institutional rankings and the variety of factors involved in their present prominence. Specific attention is given to the pressures for business schools to manipulate the rankings and some of the forms that this takes. Although rankings are likely to remain a feature of the MBA environment for the foreseeable future, consideration is nevertheless given to alternative ways of providing potential MBA students with more useful sources of information.
European Management Review 12/2010; 5(4):209 - 214.
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