Decision Science 101

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Decision Science 101

Society of Decision Professionals Pre Conference Online Mini-Workshop

By Society of Decision Professionals

When and where

Date and time

Thursday, May 18 · 8am - 12pm PDT



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About this event

Decision Science 101: Using Structured Thinking to Supplement Your Business Smarts

Instructor: Patrick Leach

Abstract: People make decisions all the time without going through any sort of structured process or performing any analysis, and for the vast majority of decisions, this is fine. Business executives rise to positions of authority in large part because of an exceptional ability to make good decisions in difficult situations. Their intuition and instincts are better than most.

As things become more complex, however, it makes sense to supplement one’s instincts with as rich an understanding of the situation as can be achieved, given the usual limitations on time and resources. Such insights can often be gleaned by thinking one’s way through the problem in a structured manner, fully considering uncertainties and competing objectives, and thinking creatively about one’s alternatives.

  This workshop will cover:

· When to go with your instincts, and when to use a more structured approach

· What subjective probability is (and what it isn’t)

· How to derive valid probability estimates

· Common pitfalls to avoid; psychological weaknesses that all humans have

· The value of considering multiple perspectives

· How to think about tradeoffs between competing objectives

· Tools that can help to overcome various pitfalls and provide clarity in complex times

  The material covered will include concepts contained in Patrick Leach’s book, Why Can’t You Just Give Me the Number?, as well as other sources.


The target audience for this workshop is young professionals and experienced managers who are relatively new to decision science.

About the organizer

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