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The Psychologist Vol 26 No 6 June 2013

The Psychologist Vol 26 No 6 June 2013

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In As You Like It, Shakespeare noted that 'The fool doth think he is wise, but the wise man knows himself to be a fool'. Bertrand Russell concurred: 'One of the painful things about our time is that those who feel certainty are stupid, and those with any imagination and understanding are filled with doubt and indecision'. In 1999 David Dunning and Justin Kruger demonstrated the effect experimentally in one of my favourite ever findings: incompetent people lack the competence to recognise their own incompetence. 

But it's not just the incompetent: we are all prone to errors in our understanding of ourselves in comparison to others. Nearly seven years on from his last piece ( we welcome Dunning back for an update on why people in general appear to know other people better than they know themselves.

Elsewhere we have an extensive set of reports from the Society's Annual Conference (see p.398), and our broader 'Reviews' section (p.452) continues to benefit from willing volunteers, many alerted to opportunities through @psychmag on Twitter.
Dr Jon Sutton

The paradox of knowing: Why do we have greater insight into others than ourselves?
David Dunning outlines some intriguing research

Imagining the future - a bird's eye view   
James Thom, Nicola Clayton and Jon Simons on episodic future thinking

Interview: Working at the cutting edge   
Lance Workman talks to Kevin Browne about his international work on institutional childcare practices

Methods: Network analysis   
David Hevey, Aifric Collins and Amy Brogan

Diagnosis debate; humour; stupidity; the academic backlog; disabled scientists; A-level; the virtual conference; and more

News and digest
The launch of DSM-5; hospital passport; emotional support following stroke; nudge unit; fist clenching and memory; replication; awards; and the latest nuggets from the Society's free Research Digest service

Annual conference
Reports from the Society's Annual Conference in Harrogate, including:

  • Alex Haslam and Robin Dunbar covering each other's keynotes;
  • asylum seekers;
  • social media;
  • Presidential Address;
  • magicians, mesmerists and mediums;
  • the 2011 riots;
  • contemporary masculinities;
  • revisiting the classics;
  • ethics;
  • working memory and education;
  • nostalgia; 
  • and more 

President's column; Lifetime Achievement Award; the Research Digest on the radio; and more

Careers and appointments
We meet Professor Dame Glynis Breakwell, and Dr Jennifer Hall writes about her work in Uganda

Is psychology being taken for a ride?; pioneers; experiences of war; Being Human; A Box of Birds; Light Show; All in the Mind; and more

New voices
An ecological approach to audio description from Louise Fryer in the latest of our series for budding writers (see

Looking back
Freud and the British royal family: David Cohen delves into some intriguing and bizarre connections

One on one
with Stephen Murgatroyd


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