Seeing from outside

Ethan Zuckerman blogs a talk by Jonah Lehrer at Poptech.

When we’ve got hard problems we turn them over to experts. That might be the wrong thing to do Lehrer suggests. … Lehrer ends on this intriguing idea: “Problems are intractable because we didn’t see them from the outside.”

Lehrer cites some fascinating research to support this: two groups are given a problem to solve. Their performance is strongly affected by one variable. One group is told the problem comes from people down the corridor, the other group are told it comes from Greece. The From Greece group do much better. Check it out.

Hat tip: David Smith

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