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Groupthink

innomen
Posts: 10,052
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4/8/2011 1:20:12 PM
Posted: 5 years ago
"Individual creativity, uniqueness, and independent thinking are lost in the pursuit of group cohesiveness, as are the advantages of reasonable balance in choice and thought that might normally be obtained by making decisions as a group.[citation needed] During groupthink, members of the group avoid promoting viewpoints outside the comfort zone of consensus thinking. A variety of motives for this may exist such as a desire to avoid being seen as foolish, or a desire to avoid embarrassing or angering other members of the group. Groupthink may cause groups to make hasty, irrational decisions, where individual doubts are set aside, for fear of upsetting the group's balance. The term is frequently used pejoratively, in hindsight. Additionally, it is difficult to assess the quality of decision making in terms of outcomes all the time, but one can almost always evaluate the quality of the decision-making process."

Once you know what it is, you understand better why people believe what they believe. Once you know what it is you see it everywhere. I know most here have know of this phenomenon, but there was a thread on concensus, and this particular phenomonon is a large component of how concensus works, and where so many of our political problems lie. We're stuck thinking that things are to be done as they have always been done, and radical change only means a lot more or a lot less of what's been done before.
RoyLatham
Posts: 4,488
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4/10/2011 11:39:43 PM
Posted: 5 years ago
An obvious example is leftist academia. It's next to impossible to get a job teaching in the liberal arts if a person does not conform to a leftist view of the world.

The book "The Black Swan" discusses the paucity of out-of-the-box thinking. The author made a fortune in the stock market by thinking of rare events that would upset an industry. When the book became a best-seller, he gave a lot of lectures and seminars. He said that the military are the most open to unconventional thinking. They deal with a lot of unconventional problems.