Perception of Probability and Correlations in Statistics, Economics and Politics

The “Perception of Probability and Correlations in Statistics, Economics and Politics” workshop takes place at Columbia University on Tuesday, June 18, 2019 from 9:00am to 5:00pm.


Watson Conference Room, 612 West 115th Street, 6th Floor New York, NY 10027

Download Full Workshop Schedule (pdf)


David Schmeidler: Keynote Speaker

Title: Desirability relations in Savage’s model of decision making. (A joint work with Dov Samet.)

Meg Meyer: Invited Talk

Title: Choosing Joint Distributions: Theory and Application to Information Design

Abstract (pdf file)

Ronny Razin: Invited Talk

Title: The Drowning Out of Moderate Voices: A Maximum Likelihood Approach to Combining Forecasts – Gilat Levy and Ronny Razin

    Abstract:  We provide a novel rationale for why extreme forecasts are often more persuasive than moderate ones. We show that when people look for the most likely explanation of the views or opinions they observe, they will adopt an explanation according to which moderate views are just statistical derivatives of extreme views. Therefore, when using the most likely explanation to interpret a plurality of opinions, they will only use the information conveyed in the extreme views, completely ignoring more moderate views. We characterize this maximum likelihood (ML) approach to information aggregation in a dynamic model and show that it leads to a simple and dynamically consistent way of aggregating opinions. We highlight some behavioral implication of this approach such as directional updating and stagnation of beliefs. Finally we analyze the convergence properties of the ML approach using extreme value theorems. We show that in contrast to Bayesians, for individuals using the ML approach, the prior beliefs might still matter even when individuals are exposed to rich information structures indefinitely.


Sharon Harrison: Local Speaker

Abstract (pdf file)

Victor H. de la Pena Local Speaker [Columbia]



Loran Chollete [Sacred Heart University]
Victor H. de la Pena [Columbia]