"Decision Making and Problem Solving" by Herbert A. Simon and Associates

Essay by happy_bubblesUniversity, Bachelor'sA, April 2006

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Should I wear a coat or a sweater to school? What's for dinner? Which company offers the best deal for car insurance? Should I take college classes on line or at the campus? How can eggs become more nutritious? Should the United States pull their troops from the Middle East? When? What are the benefits of Genetic Engineered food sources? Do the benefits outweigh the risks? The list goes on and on. All of questions we all face daily, from a child up through our government, depend on decision making and problem solving. In all walks of life, we, the people worldwide, are involved in some type of decision making and problem solving on a daily basis. These actions, when combined and performed successfully, keep our society working at peak performance. Decision Making and Problem Solving, written by Herbert A. Simon and Associates informs the reader of who decision making, problem solving and theory intertwine at a scientific level in an attempt to better understand behavior.

Simon chose to evaluate each process separately. The decision making processes he discusses utilize the SEU Theory and how it intertwines within the limits of rationality in economic theory. Simon describes SEU as being "Central to the body of prescriptive knowledge about decision making has been the theory of subjective expected utility (SEU), a sophisticated mathematical model of choice that lies at the foundation of most contemporary economics, theoretical statistics, and operations research". In Simon hypothesis, he concludes the tools used in modern research prove their usefulness through the SEU theories.

The next section includes problem solving where Simon explores how economics, statistics and operational research roots come from theory. These applications are used primarily by government through artificial intelligence research and psychologists, though some research is performed by economists' too. The extensions...