Wisdom of pragma-dialectic crowds

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Wisdom of pragma-dialectic crowds is a research study about measuring the performance (informativeness and calibration) of estimates obtained from open participation in Opasnet after a process of pragma-dialectical argumentation. The performance is measured by the classical method by Cooke[1]. We are especially interested in whether pragma-dialectic argumentation improves the quality of estimates. A randomised trial could be performed: a group of actively edited variables are randomly divided into groups. The first group is improved with simple discussions and edits, while the other group is edited in a way that discussions are systematically converted into pragma-dialectical argumentations with a thread structure. A researcher performs the conversion, but he is not allowed to bring in any new information, nor participate in any other way. The variables are followed for a pre-defined time period, after which the calibration and informativeness in the beginning and currently are estimated and the improvement measured. Ideally, the variables tested should be such that the true answer is known to the researcher after the study, but it is not easy to see how this would be arranged.

This study will be launched when we have enough activity on a large enough number of variables, and alternative estimates of the same variables.

See also


  1. Cooke et al., Experts in Uncertainty, 1991.

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