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How to make better decisions | Dr. Joe Arvai | TEDxCalgary

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This talk was given at a local TEDx event, produced independently of the TED Conferences. Are you an architect or an archaeologist of your thoughts? As decision scientist Joe Arvai dissects how we make decisions, he draws parallels between construction principles and how we process information using a building code of goals, options, outcomes and trade-offs. By exploring doubts, reflecting on choices and monitoring if what we decide aligns with our values, Arvai teaches us how our decisions define us. Dr. Joe Arvai is Professor and Svare Chair in Applied Decision Research at the University of Calgary. He is based in the Department of Geography, the Institute for Public Health, and the Institute for Sustainable Energy Environment and Economy. He is an internationally recognized expert in the risk and decisions sciences. Arvai’s research explores how people process information and make decisions. His research is focused on developing and testing decision support systems that can be used by people to improve decision quality across a wide range of environmental, social, and economic contexts. Dr. Arvai is also a Senior Researcher at Decision Research in Eugene, Oregon, and an Adjunct Professor in Engineering and Public Policy at Carnegie Mellon University in Pittsburgh, Philadelphia. Arvai is also a member of the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency’s Science Advisory Board, and is a member of the U.S. National Academy of Sciences’ Board on Environmental Change and Society. About TEDx, x = independently organized event In the spirit of ideas worth spreading, TEDx is a program of local, self-organized events that bring people together to share a TED-like experience. At a TEDx event, TEDTalks video and live speakers combine to spark deep discussion and connection in a small group. These local, self-organized events are branded TEDx, where x = independently organized TED event. The TED Conference provides general guidance for the TEDx program, but individual TEDx events are self-organized.* (*Subject to certain rules and regulations)
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Text Comments (28)
iqra afzal (12 days ago)
Useless one
Cyndi Ware (2 months ago)
this is misleading. i think we are looking at the mechanics of decision making, not global centered environmental decision making. Very dry and technical--humans engage both mind and emotions. We aren't automotons--or are we?
cspringsreal (4 months ago)
Good material but the instructor's endless shifting his body back and forth is so distracting it's hard to concentrate on what he's saying. I hope he doesn't do this while teaching college but rather was just extremely nervous. Camera should have stayed on the slides the entire time
Mariah Aurora (5 months ago)
It's really better to add chemicals or leach BPA into the water to make it "safe" ?? For real? The World Journal of Gastrointestinal Oncology published a study in 2016 showing an increased risk of colorectal cancer in people exposed to chlorinated drinking water. There is also information linking chlorine to heart disease. I suppose that the safety of the brown water also depends on what chemicals (if any) they are using to bathe and wash clothes with go into that supply. I this a case of actually doing good for a population or of westerners trying to push their ideas of what it means to be healthy on the rest of the world? Is the brown water unsafe or do we just not like the look of it because we aren't accustomed to drinking water in that manner? It's definitely something to think about, but really I need more information before I would recommend people start using plastics to protect their health!
North Carolinaaa (5 months ago)
Anyone else watching this because they're required to by the school?
Skeet Buns (5 months ago)
North Carolinaaa me
Tools & Tricks (6 months ago)
till end.. I could not catch what is going on here ?
aaron pankey (6 months ago)
this weak, g. 5/10
Internet Harry (7 months ago)
This absolutely sucks. Terrible, terrible ted talk. Jesus.
Josue Nieves (9 months ago)
Stopped watching Tedx the moment they started to give real content in lieu of their social justice messages.
Mohamed Conde (1 year ago)
OlymPigs2010 (1 year ago)
...nothing new or interesting here to learn!
Emmanuel Mark (1 year ago)
hello sir, please i need your opinion regarding a question. If you are alone on an island and you have $100 to spend, there are shops around from where you can buy products that are not branded. kindly explain the buying process??
Bruce Keller (1 year ago)
drugs and women
Genaline Cabije (1 year ago)
I appreciate the flow of the topic.. There are data he mentioned which don't convince me, do people's choice really reflect their values... If they are true, I should be thankful for that..
Genaline Cabije (1 year ago)
His introduction to the topic is amazingly GREAT!
Muneeruddin Mohammed (1 year ago)
Am i only the one who didn't see any dolphins in that slide.
iqra afzal (12 days ago)
Me too
vianneli92 (1 year ago)
Muneeruddn Mohammed look at the shaded parts not the overall
Buddy Bradley (1 year ago)
He doesn't really tells us how. Misleading title. Also, I'm getting tired of the talks when they spend a lot of time talking about when they went to Africa to help and talking about environmentalism for no good reason. This are short talks and they should get to the point, otherwise it's a waste of time and poor decision making tbh.
Keith Lee (2 months ago)
I disagree, I enjoyed the way it was presented. His main point was: To make the best decision, you must consider what your values are and choose the option that aligns the most with your personal values, considering each alternative in terms of pros and cons. The downside is that this can be a time consuming approach, so he suggested using intuition and simply learning through experience for smaller, unimportant decisions. The example of choosing an oil supplier was to illustrate that people don't usually make decisions in that way. He also made a point to say that decisions should be reflected on and evaluated. Personal values can change over time, and the decisions you make should reflect that.
Lindah Oluoch (1 year ago)
I agree with you. He is misleading in telling people that in Tanzania, there isn't enough money to go around so people trade cashew-nuts for water treatment systems.Such nonsense and yet the point he was leading to about decision-making, is actually very relevant. African poverty and suffering is an old stale myth. I live in Nairobi, not far from Tanzania, and I drink water from a water dispenser and I work in an 8-Floor building and there is running water and electricity and air-conditioning and good working conditions and clean air. I see poverty but it only seems rampant because I desire much higher quality of life. There are definitely limited opportunities for everyone to attain the highest standards of living possible but only like 3% of Kenyans or Tanzanians may still have to fetch water from a chocolate-textured, milky green pond. It almost sounds like he was funded by Proctor and Gamble so he had to mention something commercially relevant.
R. Riaz (1 year ago)
what he is saying is totally unrelated to the title. it wasnt helpful till the last point that our decisions and values should be in line.
s (1 year ago)
ill mannered cow chewing with her mouth open in the audience - disgusting
Adrian Lucas (2 years ago)
This is the best advice on decision making I've ever seen and a great example of exceptional presentation and structure. Thank you, this has helped me understand why I make poor decisions and hopefully how to make better ones.
Bottle502 (2 years ago)
My only criticism is the example of the Masai people choosing things they value about water...that's not culture specific, every group of humans value those characteristics of water
Scorch Artist (2 years ago)
i would adding on to this to also get a deep understanding of cognitive biases and how our evolved mental shortcuts may effect our decision making.
satyajitsinh kosamiya (2 years ago)
this is the one of the best Ted talk I ever had....learn from Dr.arvai he knows what he is talking about

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