Other Writing

Articles from the New York Times, Forbes, Wired and beyond – any piece that isn’t one of my columns.

Foolproof by Sander van der Linden

Rukmani and her family were driving to a temple in Tamil Nadu, India, in May 2018, when they stopped to ask for directions from an elderly local lady. It seemed a safe enough thing to do. The family hadn’t realised that almost every local with access to WhatsApp had...

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What We Owe The Future – A review

The moral philosopher Jonathan Glover tells a story about attending a conference of ethicists in Poland. The itinerary included a visit to Auschwitz. On the coach ride there, the academics earnestly discussed topics such as whether it could ever be morally justifiable...

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A history and defence of opinion polling

Strength In Numbers: How Polls Work and Why We Need Them. By G. Elliott Morris. W.W. Norton; 224 pages; $28.95 and £21.99 In the 1920s, George Gallup sought to expand the circulation of his student newspaper. To gain readers’ attention, he published a misogynistic...

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We must pay the cost of carbon if we are to cut it

Shouldn’t we be doing more to respond to the climate emergency? It’s a natural question to ask. But, perhaps, we should turn the question around, and ask: why haven’t we solved the climate change problem already? Economics suggests a ready answer: externalities....

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How to Truth with Statistics

“The crooks already know these tricks; honest men must learn them in self-defense.” – so wrote nerd legend Darrell Huff, in his million-selling “How To Lie With Statistics” (1954). It’s a delightful little work, full of deceptive graphics, spurious correlations,...

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Espionage, assassination, and the modern factory

Piedmont, in North West Italy, is celebrated for its fine wine. But when a young Englishman, John Lombe, travelled there in the early eighteenth century, he wasn’t going to savour a glass of Barolo. His purpose was industrial espionage. Lombe wished to figure out how...

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