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Publisher's Summary

THE INTERNATIONAL BESTSELLER

From the world-leaders in strategic thinking and the multi-million copy bestselling authors of Thinking Fast and Slow and Nudge, the next big book to change the way you think.  

We like to think we make decisions based on good reasoning–and that our doctors, judges, politicians, economic forecasters and employers do too. In this groundbreaking book, three world-leading behavioural scientists come together to assess the last great fault in our collective decision-making: noise.

We all make bad judgements more than we think. Noise shows us what we can do to make better ones.

PLEASE NOTE: When you purchase this title, the accompanying PDF will be available in your Audible Library along with the audio. 

©2021 Daniel Kahneman, Olivier Sibony, Cass R. Sunstein (P)2021 HarperCollins Publishers Limited

Critic Reviews

"Noise may be the most important book I've read in more than a decade. A genuinely new idea so exceedingly important you will immediately put it into practice. A masterpiece." (Angela Duckworth, author of Grit)

"An absolutely brilliant investigation of a massive societal problem that has been hiding in plain sight." (Steven Levitt, co-author of Freakonomics)

"A monumental, gripping book.... Outstanding." (Sunday Times)

What listeners say about Noise

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  • Overall
    2 out of 5 stars

Not Thinking Fast and Slow

It's a lot like Thinking Fast and Slow but the aspect of Noise being harder to detect means it's considerably less interesting, literally the best think in the book is decision cascades which is honestly just bias with extra steps

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A bit niche, but still a solid recommendation.

A fantastic treatise on an important topic. It's probably less generally applicable for most people than the author's other very popular book, Nudge, but a you might still find it enlightening even if you can't personally utilize the noise-reducing techniques within. Personally, I think it suffers a bit as an audiobook, because there are frequently long descriptions of hypothetical situations, sociological experiments, and maths which I personally feel like I need to relisten to sometimes so I can grok the necessary details, and that's just more easily done with text.

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  • papapownall
  • 05-21-21

Where there is judgment there is noise

When I saw that the authors of Thinking, Fast and Slow (Daniel Kahneman) and Nudge (Cass R Sustein) had collaborated to write this book, my System 1 thinking kicked in and I immediately hit the "buy" button. I do like this type of "clever thinking" book and was intrigued to discover what "noise" was all about.

The authors collectively consider the impact of "noise" on the way people apply judgment and also discuss the difference between noise and bias. This may include any decision we make and is applicable to investment decisions, recruitment, sentencing for criminal justice and calculations for insurance risks. Humans are fallible and it is found that a simple way to reduce noise is to consider the "wisdom of the crowd" by simple aggregation and averaging of opinions. This is not so easy, of course, with one off events and, as we know, history only runs once and it is impossible to quantify the impact of noise on unique political decisions.

There is some overlap in this book with previous works by the authors such as Kahnman's System 1 / System 2 thinking and the concept of Superforecasting as outlined in Philip Tetlock and Dan Gardner book from 2016 is also re-visited here. There is also a lot of content devoted to statistical analysis which some will love but others (myself included) will find heavy going in places.

I may be biased (see what I did there?) here, but I would give this book 4 stars. It has been proven that the first person in a group who speaks will guide the group in its collective decision, so maybe this first review will set a trend.

26 people found this helpful

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  • Auguste Dupin
  • 05-22-21

Powerful book

A few people have left negative reviews, but I feel they have not read or engaged with the book. A powerful case is made by Kahneman et al. that noise is an important problem in many decision contexts, and concerning how to interpret and deal with that noise. Laypeople, and even non-statististicians who use statistics, could learn a lot from the book -- although there are indeed some controversial claims that could have used another revision. Nonetheless this is an important book and I think it will have a long life.

The audiobook is OK, but the narrator runs through material breathlessly and often with evident misunderstanding. He reads chapter and section headings as if they are simply part of the ongoing text and that is a most alarming habit. The narrator of Thinking Fast and Slow was so good -- what happened to him?

15 people found this helpful

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  • gr stooge
  • 05-27-21

Hard going

This kind of book is not suited to audible. Although you can download an accompanying PDF I think a text copy of the book is important to digest the material properly.
It takes me back to my school days, eyes glazing over as the narrator reads out studies.

7 people found this helpful

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  • S. Roberts
  • 05-26-21

Not very interesting

Good subject matter but the result is repetitive and also you need a download that I have yet to find!!

3 people found this helpful

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  • MJ
  • 01-09-22

The irony of noise!

This book, is really about variation when people make judgements, but they call it noise: not systemic or individual bias, but occasion and individual noise blah blah. The whole pitch is "you should reduce noise" in a noisy book, as your first task is to get used to the unholy offspring of Sheldon and Kermit squeaking the words out. Then once you can concentrate on the content, it first seems like an advert for buying a Noise Audit with some pretty poor marketing style imagineering. Then they do it again and again in a Gladwellian attempt to prove the same point slightly differently, before just repeating themselves again, until the whole things descends into an exercise in the wisdom of (informed) crowds. Then right at the end they explain that noise can be good and the implications of trying to reduce it, can make the whole thing pointless. Drum roll and cymbal crash to the irony. I'm a massive fan of Dan and Cass, but this book feels like it was written during several wine infused dinner parties.... what were they thinking?

1 person found this helpful

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  • Amazon Customer
  • 06-11-22

an extraordinary insight into human decision makin

such a flawless and insightful book. beautiful and simple to understand. must read for anyone interested

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  • Wolfie's Wibbles
  • 04-28-22

Good book but needs more editing

The subject was really interesting, well explained and though I've not studied statistics I could understand the concepts without needed to get all the maths.
Some of the points felt over-explained which is why I say needs more editing but it doesn't detract too much.
Vocal performance was clear and easy to listen to: it feels conversational not lecturing which can happen with this kind of book. Delivery is slow but I just sped it up so not an issue

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  • Amazon Customer
  • 12-20-21

Insightful book, though not well-suited to audiobook

Noise is an insightful and thought-provoking book, though it is perhaps poorly-served as an audiobook. This is due to the amount of technical detail included, and the frequent need to refer to the accompanying PDF.

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  • Anonymous User
  • 12-12-21

Informative, educative , unsettling

A very well constructed and read book on a complex subject, providing unsettling insights into real world decision making but clearly setting out methods for improvements.

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  • Olzhas Berkimbay
  • 12-02-21

So boring and lacks substance.

So boring and lacks substance. Please don't buy it. The voice will put you to sleep.

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  • justinhennessy
  • 11-25-21

Terrible audio book …

I got about 2 hours in and gave up as there was too many references to “the attached PDF”. I don’t listen to audio books to have to refer to other things, it should be stand alone.

Having said that, I may buy the physical book because the topic is of interest.

1 person found this helpful

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  • young
  • 09-04-21

The first half of the book is not too revolutionary

If you are a statistician. It basically covers basic statistical concepts in a format more easily digestible by laymen. The rest of the book does have a few interesting observations

1 person found this helpful

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  • ajay kapoor
  • 07-04-21

Very interesting and thought provoking

The book is an insight into noise …an important but often neglected facet of decision making. It mentions radiology as one of the fields in which decision making is often noisy and as a radiologist I couldn’t agree more.
There are many practical points in the book that we can and should incorporate in our lives . ..I certainly have .
Readers of “thinking fast and slow” will not be disappointed.

1 person found this helpful

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  • Michael Patterson
  • 02-15-22

An important book on how to make better decisions

Should be mandatory reading for people who make decisions in their professional roles. Good research is constantly giving us good reasons to update our ideas about how we do things that are important and of consequence. Understanding bias and noise will fundamentally change how we think and make decisions.

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  • Chris van der Weyden
  • 12-26-21

More original insights from Kahneman

Research supported advice of how to identify and mitigate errors in judgement from experts in the field.

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  • Joel
  • 11-13-21

must read

interesting, insightful and introspectively challenging. A birds eye view that poignantly frames some of societies shortfalls in a way that requires everyone to think without pointing the finger.

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    2 out of 5 stars
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  • Segey Bondar
  • 09-26-21

Surprisingly disappointing

After the brilliant "Thinking Fast and Slow" my expectations from this book were very high, but it completely failed to deliver. I found this book very boring, and also full with questionable (to say the least) suggestions that are presented as absolute truths. I guess one thing summarizes this book very well - it manages to praise the Facebook's "community standards". Yes, they are serious. Such a disappointment. The narrator's performance is good though, if only the material was up to the bar.

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    5 out of 5 stars
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  • IDmp3
  • 09-06-21

An absolute masterpiece that's well overdue

Well narrated, beautifully written, profoundly thought out and rigorously researched.
Should be in every high-schoolers reading list. Bestow this tome upon your children.