My new phrase of the conference week is cognitive polyphasia, the ability to hold conflicting ideas about the same thing at the same time.
This phrase was used in both the fringe events (reports here and here) that I went to that had public opinion data from IPSOS Mori that showed how people held mutually incompatible views about critical issues. It is particularly apparent when people believe that their own experience is not indicative of people’s experiences in general.
Examples of cognitive polyphasia are:
- The NHS is falling apart – The care I had for my operation was wonderful
- All politicians are crooks – My MP is a decent man
You can see how it could cause problems for politicians!
This content was originally posted on my old Process Guy blog.