Why experts often get predictions wrong

One of the problems with economic forecasting is that a small change in a few variables can make predictions almost impossibly complex. The maths can quickly become complicated.

Part of the problem is that we misunderstand the science of forecasting and look to the wrong people for predictions. If we want to know what’s happening to the economy, we think the obvious thing to do is ask an economist. That may be the wrong approach.

Forecasting is an art that is separate from the need to have specific subject knowledge. The people who were best at predicting the Arab spring were not Middle East experts. They were people who studied eastern Europe and had seen similar patterns develop there.

We don’t need subject experts, we need people who are great at forecasting anything.

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