The Price of Certainty


Dr. Kruglanski erklärt seine Theorie der „Cognitive Closure“, die den Prozess von Entscheidungen beschreibt. „Closure“ ist dabei der Moment, in dem wir genug Informationen über einen Gegenstand haben, unser „Gehirn zumachen“ und die Entscheidung fällen. Wer schneller Entscheidungen fällt, hat eine höhere „Need for Closure“, wer eine geringere „Need for Closure“ hat, hält eher Ambivalenzen aus, ist allerdings nicht sehr entscheidungsfreudig und in unsicheren Zeiten erhöht sich die „Need für Closure“ bei allen und wir wählen Figuren wie Trump. Einer von vielen Mechanismen at work right now.

It’s alarming to see how polarized politics have become in the United States. The wider the gulf grows, the more people seem to be certain that the other side is wrong. Certainty can be a dangerous thing. Dr. Kruglanski is best known for his theory of “cognitive closure,” a term he coined in 1989 to describe how we make decisions. “Closure” is the moment that you make a decision or form a judgment. You literally close your mind to new information.

during times of fear and anxiety — like, for example, right now — everybody’s need for closure increases. We tend to make judgments more quickly, regardless of the facts. We’re also drawn to leaders who are decisive and paint solutions in simple terms. After the attacks of Sept. 11, 2001, Dr. Kruglanski and his team of researchers found that as the color-coded terrorism threat system increased, support for President George W. Bush went up accordingly. The more uncertain our world seems, the more we compensate by seeking out certainty.