Unrealistic optimism about future life events: a cautionary note.

  title={Unrealistic optimism about future life events: a cautionary note.},
  author={Adam J. L. Harris and Ulrike Hahn},
  journal={Psychological review},
  volume={118 1},
A robust finding in social psychology is that people judge negative events as less likely to happen to themselves than to the average person, a behavior interpreted as showing that people are "unrealistically optimistic" in their judgments of risk concerning future life events. However, we demonstrate how unbiased responses can result in data patterns commonly interpreted as indicative of optimism for purely statistical reasons. Specifically, we show how extant data from unrealistic optimism… 

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