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The Power of Experiments: Decision Making in a Data-Driven World

3.49  ·  Rating details ·  118 ratings  ·  17 reviews
How organizations--including Google, StubHub, Airbnb, and Facebook--learn from experiments in a data-driven world.

Have you logged into Facebook recently? Searched for something on Google? Chosen a movie on Netflix? If so, you've probably been an unwitting participant in a variety of experiments--also known as randomized controlled trials--designed to test the impact of dif
Hardcover, 211 pages
Published March 3rd 2020 by MIT Press (first published February 7th 2020)
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Duygu Dagli
Luca and Bazerman took a subject which has great potential and wasted it with presenting the reader excerpts from Thaler's Nudge and Duckworth's Grit, and talking about some of the research centers the writers worked for. The rest of the book is a few examples from tech industry. The message this book is trying to deliver is "You can use tests/experiments to answer your questions" which unfortunately for a book written in 2020 is at least 15 years too late.

I admit that I am not an average reade
Theodore Kinni
Dec 16, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Terrific, accessible intro to the use of experiments to inform business and policy decisions for non-experts. Part history, part case studies, part lessons. Read an advance copy, book is due in March 2020.
Jonas Hjalmar
Feb 18, 2021 rated it liked it
Budskapet skriver jag under på till 100 %: att experiment är det bästa (minst dåliga?) sättet att utveckla en verksamhet, oavsett det är offentlig eller privat sektor eller NGO's. Men, framförandet är något repetitivt och blir mest en aptitretare inför den stora buffé som experimentella metoder innebär.

Bazerman & Luca, båda två luttrade Business School-professorer, menar att vi är i en "experimentens revolution" där en mängd företag och organisationer nu kan samla in och analysera data på ett sä
Greg Stoll
May 31, 2020 rated it liked it
This book was fine enough. It's all about how companies and governments should do experiments rather than using their intuition about what they think will work. There's some amount of useful stuff if you're actually in a position to do such things, but other than that the book is mostly examples of places that have done experiments. A few interesting points:

- The British government did an experiment on the wording they used on letters to people that hadn't paid their taxes. Turns out the most ef
Jun 17, 2020 rated it really liked it

How many experiments do you think you’ve participated in over the past year? We’re talking about randomized controlled trials—experiments designed to test the impact of different treatments by randomly assigning you and other participants (often called subjects) to various treatment conditions, like those you might have participated in if you took Psych 101 or if you’ve tried out an experimental drug. So, what’s your number? At first blush, you might think the answer is zero
Nilesh Makan
Sep 07, 2020 rated it really liked it
I've been interested in behavioural economics of late. This book is a great summary of the discipline of behavioural economics, and how this can be applied in business. The focus is predominantly on the tech sector, mostly because it is this sector that, though technology, can run more experiments and collect the most amount of data through those experiments to test a hypothesis.

I thoroughly liked the way the book promoted that businesses should use experiments to aide decision making, but not
Todd Cheng
Jun 28, 2020 rated it really liked it
Shelves: work
The book covers key experimentation done in business and industry and how it can impact the goals.

Experimenting is a complement to intuition with data and tests. Often our gut reaction or what seem intuitive does not result in the best solution. Testing helps meet key purposes like verifying theory, understanding magnitudes, evaluating policy or products, or exploring fact finding. it is best to use a series of experimentation to create a better frameworks. Similar to how a multimodel frame wor
Apr 04, 2021 rated it liked it
Shelves: business, pragmatism
Solid introduction to the "why" of social experiments, including business. Not really about the "how." Had a lot of very familiar examples that are brought up in this realm a lot (Have you heard about eBay's advertising experiment???) but I thought it was decently-written, a rarity in business writing. It was heavily focused on behavioral economic experiments, due to the popularity and the authors' background, I think, but I appreciated the point that these biases are often plucked out of their ...more
Aidan Gibson
Jul 25, 2020 rated it did not like it
As dry as an academic book, without the rigor of one.

There is practically nothing in this book that hasn't already been said by Eric Ries and Daniel Kahneman YEARS ago.

I have no idea who they were trying to appeal to here, it's too shallow to be an intellectual book and the writing is too poor to be a proper popsci book.

If you have nothing to say, why publish?
Tran Ngan
Feb 19, 2021 rated it really liked it
The book is fine enough. It was more helpful when I apply this 'experiment' attitude mentioned in my real life. How 'experiments' help me understand more about people around me, the choices I made and how can I make better decisions in the future :) ...more
Chris Boutté
Aug 01, 2020 rated it it was amazing
Absolutely amazing book. This book does a great job teaching you how to use experiments in your everyday life as well as at work to test out different methods. It’s also an Important book to help us learn which studies we should pay attention to or ignore in media
May 08, 2020 rated it really liked it
The book is a great introduction to experiments and experimental thinking. The examples given in the book are really eye-opening and the discussions on them are also insighful. I didn't care for the structure of the book but the content was really amazing. ...more
Wen Rei
Jul 05, 2020 rated it really liked it
One of the chapters that discuss the experimentations carried out by tech companies is eye-opening as companies could not only generate more revenue when they learnt about consumers' behaviour, but also re-evaluate current decisions to save lots of money potentially. Real-world examples such as Facebook, Google, Airbnb and so on were brought out and it justifies the author's point that companies are experimenting heavily and more companies will follow suit. ...more
Feb 07, 2021 rated it it was ok
This is a good intro to experimentation in tech. The problem is that most people in tech are well-versed in experimentation. They explain companies like Google, and older ones like Yahoo! (?) to illustrate things we’ve known for a decade. The book isn’t bad, it’s just woefully late.
Phil Dearson
Aug 04, 2020 rated it liked it
It’s a gentle introduction to the benefits of evidence-based decision-making. Has a few high profile case studies. You’re not going to get any depth about decision science or behavioural economics.
Andreas Aristidou
Apr 14, 2020 rated it really liked it
This is a thoughtful, short and concise book about an in-demand topic, written by leading academics in the field of behavioral economics and experimentation. Luca and Bazerman provide examples to illustrate their points from various angles without making the book simply a collection of bullet points. They dive into the historical roots of behavioral science and experiments, focusing on the fields of Psychology and Economics. The authors cleverly describe the technicalities of experiments and beh ...more
Apr 04, 2021 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
My experience

I liked the wide spectrum of examples covered by the writer.
He gradually get you into the subject.
My first ever English book.
Very good start for my readings.
Natalia Block
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