Applying Utilitarianism

 Posted by on 3 October 2006 at 8:30 am  Academia, Ethics
Oct 032006

I don’t know if this is a true story or just an urban legend. But it’s funny nonetheless:

A famous decision theorist who once taught at Columbia got an offer from a rival university and was struggling with the question of whether to stay where he was or accept the new post. His friend, a philosopher, took him aside and said, “What’s the problem? Just do what you write about and what you teach your students. Maximize your expected utility.” The decision theorist, exasperated, responded, “Come on, get serious!”

(From “Smart Heuristics” by Gerd Gigerenzer.)

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