One of the “great attractions” of voodoo methodologies is that the means that they purportedly put at users’ disposal are supposed to enable users to perform great (scientific) feats. For instance, to identify, against all odds (the severest uncertainty imaginable), decisions that are robust to such an uncertainty. The trouble is of course that those who are lured by such methodologies are unaware that these “achievements” are due to the simple fact that, unlike conventional (scientific) methodologies, voodoo methodologies simply take the license to operate unconstrained by the requirements constraining the former. For example, a voodoo methodology can take the license to operate unfettered by the Garbage In — Garbage Out (GIGO) maxim.
The following examples illustrate this point:
- Example 1: Applied Alchemy
- Example 2: Lamppost Tricks
- Example 3: Rare Events
- Example 4: No Man’s Land
These examples make vivid characteristic features of our Case Study, namely info-gap decision theory.