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Fooled by Robustness: A Perspective from the Land of the Black Swan

Last modified: Thursday, 22-Aug-2013 01:13:46 MST


Photo by Benjamin Twist.
under the terms of the GNU Free Documentation License, Version 1.2

I am pleased to announce that the book, tentatively entitled

Fooled by Robustness:
a Perspective from the Land of the Black Swan

is now available for preview here.

I expect the book to include about 14 chapters and be around 250-300 pages long, perhaps a bit longer. Currently, 12 chapters have been completed and I plan to complete the rest within 2-3 months. I'll then have to review it, at least twice.

Hopefully, the book will be published before the end of 2014.

Broadly speaking, in this book I reflect on my campaign over the past four years to contain the spread of info-gap decision theory in Australia.

In this book I show how easily experienced risk analysts can be fooled by robustness theories that promise --- but fail to deliver --- reliable tools for the treatment of severe uncertainty.

I therefore do not share Nassim Taleb's optimistic view that robustness as such is an effective safeguard against the false sense of security that formal models of uncertainty may instill in the minds of risk analysts.

I would like to invite you to contribute to this book by reading and commenting on the chapters that are available already. I'll acknowledge your contribution in the final version of the book.

Regarding the photo on the front cover of the book.

I am not perfectly happy with this photo. It is cute but ... I hope that I shall be able to find something more colorful that is "typical" Australian. I have a nice photo of the National Flower, but ... is there something more colorful?

Some of the (red) eucalyptus flowers are colorful, but ... is there something more exciting/exotic?

Your suggestions regarding this matter will be greatly appreciated.

Last but not least, if you are interested in this topic, you might be interested in reading my 200-page report to ACERA on this topic.



Download s preview copy

Date postedMaterial
February 15, 2011 Preface, Chapter 1 --- Chapter 7 (about 230 pages)Download a preview copy (3MB, PDF)
February 5, 2011 Preface, Chapter 1 --- Chapter 6, + corrections
February 4, 2011 Preface, Chapter 1 --- Chapter 6

For your convenience, here is a copy of the Preface.

Disclaimer: This page, its contents and style, are the responsibility of the author (Moshe Sniedovich) and do not represent the views, policies or opinions of the organizations he is associated/affiliated with.

Last modified: Thursday, 22-Aug-2013 01:13:46 MST