The Wisdom of Crowds

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photoWe look up to our leaders, in politics, science and economics. But large crowds of average Joes often make better decisions than highly trained experts, says New Yorker writer James Surowiecki in his new book, "The Wisdom of Crowds."

Surowiecki argues that the best business leaders are the ones who keep their office doors open, and the best scientists are those who collaborate with people outside of their labs. A bunch of smart people who have similar backgrounds will not make wise decisions, Surowiecki says. For example, he points out, look at what happened in the Bay of Pigs crisis.

Click the "Listen" link to hear James Surowiecki offer more concrete examples on why he believes in the wisdom of crowds.


James Surowiecki, he writes "The Financial Page" for The New Yorker magazine. His writing has also appeared in the New York Times Magazine, Wired, Slate and The Wall Street Journal. His new book is "The Wisdom of Crowds: Why the Many are Smarter than the Few and How Collective Wisdom Shapes Business, Economies, Societies and Nations."

This program aired on June 3, 2004.


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