(Not) boring finds for 2017

December 27, 2017 | Mawer Print

Below are some of our favourite links from the year—from the inescapability of bias, to cracking cryptocurrencies, pondering the man vs. machine debate, and learning the art of asset allocation—we think it's a good gamut to send off 2017.

Happy New Year from the Art of Boring team!

The New Yorker — Why facts don’t change our mind

In a climate where facts are being bent, broken, and ignored, this article draws upon multiple scientific studies that shed light on why we don’t necessarily think straight. Even reasonable-seeming people demonstrate “myside” biases when it comes to maintaining our positions on everything from capital punishment to what we think we know about toilets.

World Economic Forum — We’re moving fast. but nobody knows where we’re going

Rapid technological shifts have muddied the predicting and planning waters in business, so, “the sooner we realize that long-term forecasting is becoming obsolete, the better we’ll be able to cope with the new reality.”

McKinsey Quarterly — A case study in combating bias

At Mawer, we’re passionate about not falling prey to cognitive biases, so this interview with the CFO of RWE discussing how crucial the rewiring of decision-making processes can be for business, was right up our alley.

Ivey School of Business — Cracking the code

About Bitcoin and what all cryptocurrencies really are.

Sneak peek: “If the World Wide Web heralded the internet of information, cryptocurrencies are heralding the internet of value.”

The Investor’s Field Guide Podcast — The art of asset allocation, with David Salem – [Invest Like the Best, EP.38]

Tune into a podcast covering a gamut of probing themes in money management from asset allocation, to human behaviour, and the fear of missing out. David Salem, CIO of Windhorse Group, guest stars.

CFA Institute Magazine — Code wed: can artificial intelligence arrange a perfect marriage of technology and human judgment?

We “quant” quite believe it—but it may just be possible.

Collaborative Fund — The unsolvable puzzle

Investors must stop thinking of their field as logical and permanent. Rather, they should be like virologists: evolving and adapting to new information that presents itself amongst the chaos.

CFA Magazine — Do “gray rhinos” pose a greater threat than black swans?

Even Sir David Attenborough would probably agree that investors should learn to spot the grey rhino, “[the] highly likely yet ignored threat” in the investing savannah. We appreciated this article’s observation that we mustn’t ignore the obvious and (potentially) big problems right in front of us—i.e., creating a framework for recurring spot checks is a must.

Fast Company — The war to sell you a mattress is an internet nightmare

A captivating read about an industry that usually puts you to sleep.

Harvard Business Review — Your brain can only take so much focus

Another win for naps…just sayin’.


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