recently about the trustworthiness of predictions which got me thinking it might be a useful exercise here to clear up a major misconception that has been a perennial plague on intelligence people and their value proposition; that is, the
role of intelligence in crafting predictions. Here's the thesis:
All Predictions Are Mistaken; the Role of Intelligence is to Lessen the Gap Between Estimates and Outcomes
Now, I'm certainly not alone in this position - I've heard versions of the idea from many colleagues over the years, yet there is a widespread belief that predictions are something solid decision makers can bank on.
Quite the contrary, as decision makers grow ever more intoxicated by the assumptions which accompany the responsibilities invested in them - many true, others false - intelligence must reveal these differences in a way that makes skepticism palatable and, indeed, valued as their foremost contribution to deliberation.
Let's talk this through - I still think too many, particularly new practitioners, remain convinced they were hired to predict outcomes, when in fact their job is to simply lessen the gap between estimates and outcomes.
Nothing short of the sustainability of our institutions is on the line.