Sources of Power: How People Make Decisions

Sources of Power: How People Make Decisions

ISBN: 0262611465

ISBN 13: 9780262611466

Publication Date: February 18, 1999

Publisher: Mit Press

Pages: 352

Format: Paperback

Author: Gary Klein

3.96 of 2,151

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"Most studies of decision-making treat humans like rats in a laboratory. But Dr. Klein, a cognitive psychologist, spent a decade watching fire commanders, fighter pilots, paramedics and others making split-second decisions on the job, and this book is a clear and engaging account of his findings."
-- "The Wall Street Journal" Anyone who watches the television news has seen images of firefighters rescuing people from burning buildings and paramedics treating bombing victims. How do these individuals make the split-second decisions that save lives? Most studies of decision making, based on artificial tasks assigned in laboratory settings, view people as biased and unskilled. Gary Klein is one of the developers of the naturalistic decision making approach, which views people as inherently skilled and experienced. It documents human strengths and capabilities that so far have been downplayed or ignored. Since 1985 Klein has conducted fieldwork to find out how people tackle challenges in difficult, nonroutine situations. "Sources of Power" is based on observations of humans acting under such real-life constraints as time pressure, high stakes, personal responsibility, and shifting conditions. The professionals studied include firefighters, critical care nurses, pilots, nuclear power plant operators, battle planners, and chess masters. Each chapter builds on key incidents and examples to make the description of the methodology and phenomena more vivid. In addition to providing information that can be used by professionals in management, psychology, engineering, and other fields, the book presents an overview of the research approach of naturalisticdecision making and expands our knowledge of the strengths people bring to difficult tasks.

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