The Good Judgment Project is a four year study organized as part of a government-sponsored forecasting tournament. It is currently moving its 3,000 signed-up citizen ‘future forecasters’ toward the close of its season three, in which…

Thousands of people around the world predict global events. Their collective forecasts are surprisingly accurate.

They have to do a whole load of research of course, it’s not fortune-telling. Hope they know about JURN. They tend to work in teams of about twelve, but the delightfully named Dart-Throwing Chimp is one of those leading the pack. He…

would have qualified for ‘superforecaster’ status in Season 3 had he not joined our research team [to help craft better questions]

The background to this is the broad failure of intelligence-led prediction based on closed information, a topic that can be explored in an accessible manner by listening to the 90-minute Long Now Foundation talk “Why Foxes Are Better Forecasters Than Hedgehogs”.

The Good Judgment Project seems to suggest the best results may come from finding ways to reliably blend the aggregated ‘wisdom of the crowd’ + human-curated Big Data computer models + autonomous bots + time-served human experts. I predict that the area of practical ‘predictive intelligence’ is one that the average researcher is going to be hearing a lot more about over the coming years.

And it might be a field for the Arts and Humanities to pitch a tent in, re: the abilities of creative industries in cultural trend spotting and meme tracking, our advanced ethical tools, the skill-sets of digital humanists, the abundant lessons to be distilled from history, the insights of ethnography and suchlike.