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© Cranfield University Thinking: How we do it & can we do better? Professor Karen Carr Cranfield Defence and Security
© Cranfield University What is Thinking?
© Cranfield University Detect / Collect Recognise / Structure / Understand Identify / Prioritise / Select Apply / Confirm Direct
© Cranfield University Information (in real world or representation of world) Non-targetsNon-targets + Target RESPONSERESPONSE “Not a Target” Correct Rejection Miss –TYPE II error –False negative “Target”False Alarm –TYPE I error –False positive Hit ‘Target’ examples: Intent Person Solution Pattern
© Cranfield University Detect / Collect Recognise / Structure / Understand Identify / Prioritise / Select Apply / Confirm Direct
© Cranfield University Some Implications You cannot increase your probability of being right without also increasing your probability of being wrong To improve performance you must change the characteristics of the ‘processor’ (your thinking) Understanding thinking and practicing it helps you do this
© Cranfield University Exercise – Thinking Awareness You will be presented with some problems to think about Can you identify what kind of thinking you are using for each problem? NB These exercises are used to help you think about your thinking – getting the answer right is not so important!
© Cranfield University Keeping these 6 circles, move one circle only to make an L-shape with 4 circles on each arm of the L.
© Cranfield University Lessons ASSUMPTIONS Importance of exploring the problem definition before the solution Use of analysis and insight
© Cranfield University Insight Test 4 The objects below have something in common: Which one of the following three objects is the next element in the row?
© Cranfield University Lessons Seeing with different perspectives ‘Letting go’ Creativity vs. analysis
© Cranfield University Intelligence What kind? How much? Bird Chimp Human
© Cranfield University Multiple Intelligences 7 “Frames of Mind”: –Linguistic –Logical-mathematical –Musical –Bodily-kinaesthetic –Visuo-spatial –Interpersonal –Intrapersonal PLUS?: Naturalistic, Existential Howard Gardner, 1983
© Cranfield University Effortful Automatic Conscious Thinking Analysis Reason Non-conscious Thinking Intuition Experience Non-conscious Thinking Intuition Experience Deliberate Explicit Systematic Tacit Holistic Primary Fast
© Cranfield University Cognitive Styles Allinson and Hayes (1996) The Cognitive Style Index
© Cranfield University Intuition Henri Poincaré, Foundations of Science, 1908 One morning, walking on the bluff, the idea came to me that the arithmetic transformations of indeterminate ternary quadratic forms were identical to those of non-Euclidean geometry.” (Poincaré, quoted in Hadamard, 1945, pp. 13–14). “I turned my attention to the study of some arithmetical questions apparently without much success I went to spend a few days at the seaside, and thought of something else.
© Cranfield University Exercise Please refer to hand-out We shall not ask for your answers to be attributed
© Cranfield University Prediction Yellow Group > White Group
© Cranfield University Anchor Point Effect (Source: Kopelman & Davis, 2004) A series of trials conducted over 13 years revealed an average of High estimates 45%> Low Estimates.
© Cranfield University Would you like to buy? Iyengar and Lepper
© Cranfield University 10 x more likely to buy
© Cranfield University Framing Effect Same information – presented differently You can both mislead and be misled “25% fail” “Problems if you don’t”“No problems if you do” “75% pass” Allow natural deathDo not resuscitate
© Cranfield University Metaphors as Framing “Crime is a beast” Enforcement “Crime is a virus” Systemic reform Initial metaphor not remembered
© Cranfield University Storytelling “Strategic leaders create a drama that resonates with members” (Boal et al. p.421) Leader role in creating meaning, shaping reality, developing a sense of self in others, developing and distributing ideas, encouraging behaviours, stimulating connectivity, developing expectations. Use of ‘stories’ to do this. BOAL, K.B. & SCHULZ, P.L. (2007), ‘Storytelling, time and evolution: The role of strategic leadership in complex adaptive systems’ The Leadership Quarterly, 19,
© Cranfield University Heuristics and Biases ‘Hard-wired’ thinking that we are born with This type of thinking evolved to help us function efficiently in our natural environment It biases us to respond quickly, be social, keep mental resources free for the unexpected (See Annexes in JDN 3/11)
© Cranfield University
Thinking and Emotion Brain biased by emotions Advantageous for social and interpersonal behaviour Decision making depends on emotions (Antonio Damasio)
© Cranfield University “Intuition”: Good or Bad?
© Cranfield University Non-Conscious Intelligence 1.Short-cuts, rules of thumb, quick solutions that have evolved in context - “hard- wired” 2.Creativity, learning, dealing with complexity and ambiguity, making use of experience – slow to build, fast to extract
© Cranfield University Developing Creativity 1.Preparation 2.Incubation 3.Illumination 4.Verification
© Cranfield University Lots of stimulation - connections Do the unusual – swap hands, change environment, speak to different types of people Gestures (enact metaphors) Analogy –stretch it Role play Individual thinking and pairs Immersion
© Cranfield University Incubation Do something else Sleep Go for a walk Don’t think
© Cranfield University Illumination Early rise Deadline Ritual, signal Bin the good ideas (don’t get attached)
© Cranfield University Implement and verify Rational sifting Watch out for heuristics Context effects
© Cranfield University What we have learned Non-conscious intelligence Good for creativity Good for complexity Good for collating experience and using it fast Prone to heuristics and bias
© Cranfield University Ways of Thinking Two fundamental functions: Consciously OR non-consciously DIVERGENT: Constructing, expanding, exploring CONVERGENT: Deconstructing, reducing, selecting
© Cranfield University The grass is wet……therefore…… The lights are out….therefore…. The car is too expensive…..therefore…. The telephone is ringing….therefore….
© Cranfield University Exercise From the statement below, what deductions can you converge upon – eliminate all assumptions, extract the basic fact(s). You can take the statement to be true as given(!). “A red car was travelling above the speed limit on a country road.”
© Cranfield University Applied Knowledge? Assumptions –Which limit, which road, where was the car travelling? –Weather, time of day (not expect speeding on snow?) –Travelling (on its own, on a lorry, etc) Images –Type of car –Traffic (associations with country?) –Occupants? (Associations with red car and speeding)
© Cranfield University Lessons ASSUMPTIONS Inferences Implicit sense-making Effects of experience and knowledge
© Cranfield University Some other creativity techniques Embodied metaphors (paths, boxes) Lateral thinking (e.g. concept fan, random word) Visualisation (thought experiments) Avoid obstacles: o “Not my area” o Need for closure, control o Fear of failure o Being judgemental
© Cranfield University Asymmetry in creative thinking Value ‘lateral move’ - not finding solution De Bono
© Cranfield University Concept Fan “Put object on ceiling” Object to ceiling Raise me off the ground Lengthen arm Self propel Piggy back on another object Stick Rope Throw Sticky ceiling Sticky object Spikey Lower ceiling Model aircraft Fix object to ceiling
© Cranfield University DIVERGENT WAYS CONVERGENT WAYS Conscious brain Non-conscious brain Thinking: Ways and Means Inductive reasoning Hypothesis generation Lateral thinking Creative thinking Intuitive development Analogy Intuitive decision making Insight “Thin slicing” Expert judgement Analysis Deduction “Slow thinking”
© Cranfield University A ‘convergent thinker’ sees a limited, predetermined number of options. By contrast, a ‘divergent thinke’r is always looking for more options. Many of us get stuck in convergent thinking and, as a result, don’t see the many possibilities available to us.
© Cranfield University Clear Analytical Thinking Practice makes perfect Techniques can be mastered Few people have studied logic
© Cranfield University How to ask a question Why might Jane Smith have omitted to do a risk assessment? a)She forgot b)She was under time pressure c)She thought it was unimportant Divergent becomes convergent – which type of thinking do you want?
© Cranfield University Ontology Problem Eggs Flour Milk Recipe Bowl Whisk Oven
© Cranfield University Ontology Problem TrainingEquipment Personnel Information Doctrine Organisation Infrastructure Logistics Independent? Subordinate? Which common properties?
© Cranfield University DefenceSecurity
© Cranfield University Given: All terrorists are extremists, and some extremists are killers. Therefore which follows: Some terrorists are killers Some killers are terrorists
© Cranfield University Extremists Terrorists Killers We don’t know where ‘Terrorist’ or ‘Killer’ are with respect to the blue circle All terrorists are extremists Some extremists are killers Some terrorists are killers? Some killers are terrorists?
© Cranfield University Lessons Clarity with conceptual thinking needs practice Asking the right question depends on conceptual clarity Finding the right answer depends on asking the right question
© Cranfield University Need for Thinking Need for Thinking Capability Thinking Capability Adapting Thinking to the Situation SITUATION – MORE COMPLEXTHINKING- MORE AGILE
© Cranfield University DIVERGENT WAYS CONVERGENT WAYS Conscious brain Non-conscious brain Thinking: Ways and Means Less Time More Information More Information More Time More People More Time More People More ambiguity More ambiguity Experience Organised Social Rules
© Cranfield University
Skilled Thinking Use all types of intelligence Be aware of innate and cultural biases Recognise you are making assumptions Clarity and discipline with concepts Understand the situation and adapt your thinking Practice cognitive management
© Cranfield University Exercise – Diagnose Your Thinking
© Cranfield University Bramble Town 8000 Residents Home of R.L. Headlington Winner of Britain in Bloom Bramble Arts Festival: 1 st – 6 th August 2014
© Cranfield University Police Community Support Officers Powers: –Issuing of fixed penalty notices (e.g. riding on footpath; dog fouling; litter) –Power to confiscate alcohol and tobacco –Power to demand the name and address of a person acting in an anti-social manner –Power of entry to save life or prevent damage –Removal of abandoned vehicles –For example; reporting vandalism or damaged street furniture, reporting suspicious activity; providing crime prevention advice, deterring juvenile nuisance and visiting victims of crime.
© Cranfield University DIVERGENT WAYS DIVERGENT WAYS CONVERGENT WAYS CONVERGENT WAYS Conscious thinking Conscious thinking Non-conscious thinking Non-conscious thinking START: What assumptions are embedded in the formulation of the problem/situation? Does anything need to be challenged in the problem given? Are you exploring the problem first? Have you introduced different perspectives? Don’t get attached – put good ideas to one side and move onto get even better ideas Are you closing down too soon ? (Don’t converge until you need to) Have you identified assumptions? Can you take time out – or at least focus elsewhere and then return to the issue? Stimulate more brain parts by using different techniques MID-WAY: Step back and review what you should be doing and what you are doing - have you characterised the problem and the phases of problem solving? Are you using different ways of thinking - appropriately? Watch for confirmation bias, framing, anchoring, availability Where can experience and knowledge help, and where might it mislead?
© Cranfield University Confirmation bias: see what you expect or wish for, pay more attention to evidence supporting this, discount evidence against Framing: influenced by the manner of presenting or articulating the information Anchoring: judgement inadvertently recalibrated by the presence of other information even if irrelevant Availability: judgement inadvertently skewed towards factors that are more familiar
© 2016 Crown Copyright. All Rights Reserved. Thinking Skills CSLP Professor Karen Carr Cranfield Defence and Security.
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