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A letter from an alumnus about Daniel Kahneman and the Nobel Prize in Economics 2002

December 2, 2002

Princeton is indeed fortunate to have Daniel Kahneman on its faculty. The fact that as a psychologist he received the Nobel Prize in Economics is indicative of how he, together with his collaborator Amos Tversky, has made fundamental contributions across disciplinary boundaries. Even many years ago, when I met Amos Tversky and his colleague Maya Bar Hillel when they each visited Harvard, it was clear that their contribution to understanding clinical judgement raised central questions about the nature of human rationality under conditions of uncertainty.

Thus when in 1981 together with Robert Hamm '7 , we coauthored our book, Medical Choices, Medical Chances: How Patients Families and Physicians Can Cope with Uncertainty, we found it essential to cite their early work. Today, now illuminated by Kahneman and Tversky's work, exploring the relationship between human judgment and motivation under conditions of uncertainty continues to be a great adventure.

Harold J. Bursztajn ’72, M.D.
Cambridge, Mass.

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