Unformatted text preview: The Strategist 9 Adam Brandenburger
J.P. Valles Professor, NYU Stern School of Business
Distinguished Professor, NYU Polytechnic School of Engineering
Member, NYU Institute for the Interdisciplinary Institute of Decision Making
Associated Faculty Member, Center for Data Science Robert S. McNamara 1916: 1937: 1939: 1943-‐46: 1946-‐1960: 1960: 1962: 1963: 1963-‐1967: 1968-‐1981: 2009: Born in San Francisco Graduated from UC Berkeley Graduated from Harvard Business School Worked to improve eﬃciency of U.S. bombers during the War in the Paciﬁc Worked at Ford Motor Company, ending as president Appointed Secretary of Defense by JFK Argued for U.S. blockade rather than aCack during Cuban Missile Crisis Recommended withdrawal of all U.S. military personnel from South Vietnam Directed Vietnam War under Lyndon Johnson Led World Bank and shiaed its focus to poverty reducbon Died at age 93 in Washington, D.C. Blight, J., and j. Lang, The Fog of War: Lessons from the Life of Robert S. McNamara, Rowman & LiCleﬁeld, 2005, 4/6/15 19:36 243-‐247. Based on: The Fog of War: Eleven Lessons from the Life of Robert S. McNamara, directed by Errol Morris, 2 Sony Pictures Classics, 2003. Graphic: hCp://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Robert_McNamara_1961.jpg Predic5on (Anchor and Adjust) è Predict the subsequent behavior of other players, by asking how one might oneself subsequently act in their posibons and then modifying these predicbons to take into account how one thinks their mental states (intenbons, desires, knowledge, and beliefs) diﬀers from one’s own History è Collect historical informabon about the parbcular context being studied 4/5/15 11:57 Observa5on è Collect data, based on various inputs, about the current behavior of the other players hCp://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/thumb/1/1a/Gray728.svg/1024px-‐Gray728.svg.png; Brandenburger A., “My Mind … or Your Mind,” course note, 01/14/15 3 History è Collect historical informabon about the parbcular context being studied 111 BC – 40 AD: Han dominabon 43 AD – 544 AD: Liang dominabon 602-‐ 905: Tang dominabon 1258 – 1288: Mongol invasions 1407 – 1428: Ming dominabon 1525 – 1775: Trjnh (North) -‐ Nguyen (South) division 1887 – 1940: French Indochina 1940: Japanese invasion 1941: Ho Chi Minh forms the Viet Minh Front 1946 -‐ 1954: France ﬁghts Viet Minh 1954: UN divides Vietnam into North – South 1954 – 1975: North (backed by Soviet Union) ﬁghts and defeats South (backed by U.S.) 4/5/15 16:38 Brandenburger A., “My Mind … or Your Mind,” course note, 01/14/15; various 4 Observa5on è Collect data, based on various inputs, about the current behavior of the other players October 15, 1962: U.S. discovers missile sites in Cuba October 25, 1962: Soviet ships turn back from U.S. naval blockade of Cuba October 26, 1962: Soviet leader Khrushchev sends a leCer oﬀering to remove the missiles from Cuba in return for a U.S. promise not to invade October 27, 1962: Khrushchev adds in a public announcement that the U.S. must remove its missiles from Turkey (placed there in 1959); U.S. U-‐2 spy plane shot down over Cuba 4/6/15 20:26 Brandenburger A., “My Mind … or Your Mind,” course note, 01/14/15; various 5 “We make our decisions. And then our decisions turn around and make us.” * 4/6/15 20:26 *F.W. Boreham, Bapbst preacher, 1871-‐1959; quoted in Shapley, D., Promise and Power: The Life and Times of 6 Robert McNamara, LiCle Brown & Co., 1993 Five of McNamara’s Lessons 1. Empathize with your enemy 2. Rabonality will not save us 3. Belief and seeing: they’re both oaen wrong 4. Be prepared to reexamine your reasoning 5. Proporbonality should be a guideline in war Blight, J., and j. Lang, The Fog of War: Lessons from the Life of Robert S. McNamara, Rowman & LiCleﬁeld, 2005. 4/6/15 18:18 Based on: The Fog of War: Eleven Lessons from the Life of Robert S. McNamara, directed by Errol Morris, Sony 7 Pictures Classics, 2003. 1. Empathize with your enemy As we have seen, there are two components here, one aﬀecbve (empathy) and one cognibve (Theory of Mind). Empathy is “the ability to share the feelings of others.” Theory of Mind is “the capacity to infer and represent another person’s intenbons, desires, or beliefs.” 4/6/15 19:45 Singer, T., and A. Tusche, “Understanding Others: Brain Mechanisms of Theory of Mind and Empathy,” in 8 Glimcher, P., and E. Fehr, Neuroeconomics: Decision Making and the Brain, 2nd ed, Academic Press, 2014, p.514. 2. Ra5onality will not save us A deﬁnibon: In decision theory, individuals are called rabonal if their preferences or behavior sabsfy certain condibons (“axioms”). An example is transibvity. If this is the issue, then internal consistency alone is indeed insuﬃcient for good decision-‐making. External consistency also maCers! Note: In economics, individuals are called rabonal if they have a correct model of others’ behavior (Nash equilibrium) or prices (“rabonal expectabons”). But this begs the quesbon! [A weaker usage: In ﬁnance, markets are eﬃcient (rabonal) if e.g. prices sabsfy the marbngale condibon. This, too, is oaen quesboned.] 4/6/15 11:39 9 3. Belief and seeing: they’re both oNen wrong 4. Be prepared to reexamine your reasoning Both of these lessons point to a mindset of “enlightened ignorance” (due to Richard Feynman) which we adopted as the overarching philosophy of the course. 4/6/15 19:46 10 5. Propor5onality should be a guideline in war In the pursuit of winning, did I lose my way? 4/6/15 19:47 11 ...
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- Spring '15
- McNamara, NYU Polytechnic School, NYU Stern School, NEW YORK UNIVERSITY STERN SCHOOL OF BUSINESS, J.P. Valles Professor, historical informabon