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© Robert Sommers 2018

Monday, April 23, 2018

Dunning Kruger Effect

Man from Utopia © Rick Griffin Estate
"If you're incompetent, you can't know you're incompetent ... The skills you need to produce a right answer are exactly the skills you need to recognize what a right answer is."
David Dunning
Ever meet someone who was terrible at something they thought they were good at?

I had a barber once who should not have been allowed anywhere near scissors. Nice girl, but...

I read this article at DPReview about the phenomenon, "Why you're not as good a photographer as you think you are."

It is called the Dunning Kuger Effect, for the authors of a seminal study on the topic,  David Dunning and Justin Kruger. These social psychologists describe a cognitive bias wherein people of low ability have illusory superiority, mistakenly assessing their cognitive ability as greater than it is.

They published a 1999 paper,"Unskilled and Unaware of It: How Difficulties in Recognizing One's Own Incompetence Lead to Inflated Self-Assessments."

Sort of an interesting conundrum, my mind thinks back to Charley and Flowers for Algernon, the latter part, when he knows something is missing but can't put a cognitive finger on it. More on the topic here. And of course, if you think I am a prime example, please kindly keep it to yourself. I was thinking more about heads of state.

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