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Thinking, Fast and Slow
Daniel Kahneman
read on October 1, 2011

This is required reading. I feel like no one in the world would be done a disservice by reading this book, and I have a hard time imagining anyone not enjoying it. Scratch that; not being totally enthralled by it.

I've been reading Kahneman since my undergrad days. I had the good fortune to stumble my way into writing a thesis more-or-less on behavioral economics - something I had previously not even known existed. Behavioral econ is like the missing link that actually connects all the charts and graphs that explain how people are supposed to work to the empirical way that we can measure how people actually do work. Kahneman has been on the vanguard of the topic since he pretty much invented it, and this book is a high level summary of his life's work. It is incredible. It's the most interesting parts of econ, phsycology, and neuroscience all mixed up - and the output is a really though full, accessible description of how and why people act the way they do.

I really can't say enough good things about it. It's long, but it's worth it. I don't read many books twice, but I really feel like this is an anchor I'll come back to every few years. This book really could have been titled "All The Things I'm Really Into" - but that probably would have limited marketing opportunities.

Author Bio:

Daniel Kahneman is an Israeli-American psychologist notable for his work on the psychology of judgment and decision-making, as well as behavioral economics, for which he was awarded the 2002 Nobel Memorial Prize in Economic Sciences (shared with Vernon L. Smith). His empirical findings challenge the assumption of human rationality prevailing in modern economic theory. With Amos Tversky and others, Kahneman established a cognitive basis for common human errors that arise from heuristics and biases (Kahneman & Tversky, 1973; Kahneman, Slovic & Tversky, 1982; Tversky & Kahneman, 1974), and developed prospect theory (Kahneman & Tversky, 1979). In 2011, he was named by Foreign Policy magazine to its list of top global thinkers. In the same year, his book Thinking, Fast and Slow, which summarizes much of his research, was published and became a best seller. He is professor emeritus of psychology and public affairs at Princeton University's Woodrow Wilson School. Kahneman is a founding partner of TGG Group, a business and philanthropy consulting company. He is married to Royal Society Fellow Anne Treisman. In 2015 The Economist listed him as the seventh most influential economist in the world.