Virtual Library

Our virtual library is an online repository of all of the reports, papers, and briefings that IST has produced, as well as works that have influenced our thinking.

Submit your Content

Reports

Ransomware Task Force: Doubling Down

Ransomware Task Force

viewpdf

Reports

Information Sharing in the Ransomware Payment Ecosystem: Exploring the Delta Between Best Practices and Existing Mechanisms

Zoë Brammer

viewpdf

Memo

Testimony: Held for Ransom: How Ransomware Endangers Our Financial System

Megan Stifel

viewpdf

Memo

Roadmap to Potential Prohibition of Ransomware Payments

Ransomware Task Force Co-Chairs

viewpdf

Reports

Unlocking U.S. Technological Competitiveness: Evaluating Initial Solutions to Public-Private Misalignments

Ben Purser, Pavneet Singh

viewpdf

Reports

Public Private Partnerships to Combat Ransomware: An inquiry into three case studies and best practices

Elizabeth Vish, Georgeanela Flores Bustamante

viewpdf

Reports

Unlocking U.S. Technological Competitiveness: Public-Private Misalignments in Biotechnology, Energy, and Quantum Sectors

Ben Purser, Pavneet Singh

viewpdf

Contribute to our Library!

We also welcome additional suggestions from readers, and will consider adding further resources as so much of our work has come through crowd-sourced collaboration already. If, for any chance you are an author whose work is listed here and you do not wish it to be listed in our repository, please, let us know.

SUBMIT CONTENT

Reasoning: How digital technologies influence decision making and judgment

Stephanie Rodriguez

SUMMARY

Below is an editorial summary of “Reasoning”:

This report provides a working definition of reasoning, narrowing the scope of the discussion to judgment and decision making. We identify three aspects of digital technology that exert significant impacts on reasoning: user experience design, gamification, and search engines. Examples include social media platforms, gamified platforms like Robinhood, and search engines like Google and Wikipedia. Key findings include:

  • The mere presence of one’s phone can have adverse effects on cognitive performance in reasoning tasks.
  • Digital tools provide short-cuts that affect judgment: Images are often used as heuristics to process information and even infer truthfulness.
  • Digital tools provide short-cuts that affect analysis: We rely on heuristics in order to process large volumes of information. That is, the digital media environment is designed for cognitive efficiency, thus engaging the use of prior mental models and schemas (through the use of heuristics) to enable quick judgment formation and often rushed or more impulsive decision making.
  • Digital tools atrophy reasoning functions: By rewiring dopaminergic pathways, aggressive “gamification” tactics can encourage addiction and weaken judgment and decision making, thus inhibiting higher order decision making.

The significant ease with which one can acquire information has disincentivized the commitment of information to memory, and reliance on external digital information sources leads to a misattribution of the Internet’s knowledge as one’s own. Reasoning may be adversely affected if knowledge that informs mental models resides externally and is never committed to retrievable memories.

download pdf