Homo heuristicus Outnumbered: Comment on Gigerenzer and Brighton (2009)
Version of Record online: 10 JAN 2011
Copyright © 2011 Cognitive Science Society, Inc.
Topics in Cognitive Science
Volume 3, Issue 1, pages 187–196, January 2011
How to Cite
Hilbig, B. E. and Richter, T. (2011), Homo heuristicus Outnumbered: Comment on Gigerenzer and Brighton (2009). Topics in Cognitive Science, 3: 187–196. doi: 10.1111/j.1756-8765.2010.01123.x
- Issue online: 10 JAN 2011
- Version of Record online: 10 JAN 2011
- Received 8 January 2010; received in revised form 19 April 2010; accepted 16 May 2010
- Fast and frugal heuristics;
- Adaptive toolbox;
- Recognition heuristic;
- Formal modeling;
- Multinomial processing tree model
Gigerenzer and Brighton (2009) have argued for a “Homo heuristicus” view of judgment and decision making, claiming that there is evidence for a majority of individuals using fast and frugal heuristics. In this vein, they criticize previous studies that tested the descriptive adequacy of some of these heuristics. In addition, they provide a reanalysis of experimental data on the recognition heuristic that allegedly supports Gigerenzer and Brighton’s view of pervasive reliance on heuristics. However, their arguments and reanalyses are both conceptually and methodologically problematic. We provide counterarguments and a reanalysis of the data considered by Gigerenzer and Brighton. Results clearly replicate previous findings, which are at odds with the claim that simple heuristics provide a general description of inferences for a majority of decision makers.