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Optimism Bias: Human Brain May Be Hardwired for Hope

Optimism BiasTali Sharot’s Time Magazine article entitled Optimism Bias: Human Brain May Be Hardwired for Hope, is a surprisingly good overview of a very important piece of science. In my judgement, this research has negative implications for as much as 80% of all nonprofit research and evaluation.

As the Gerry McGovern article we’ve linked to elsewhere shows, one obvious implication of this bias is how worthless it makes most website satisfaction surveys. And yet we keep doing them! Maybe that’s because they keep telling us what a good job we’re doing?

The Optimism Bias, or Don’t Believe Satisfaction Survey

The Optimism Bias, or Don’t Believe Satisfaction Surveys, Gerry McGovern

Best Practices for Survey Research Reports: A Synopsis for Authors and Reviewers

Best Practices for Survey Research Reports: A Synopsis for Authors and Reviewers (6 page PDF)