Georg Weizsäcker

Published On


Page Range

pp. 73–88


  • English

Print Length

16 pages

7. Perceiving how they talk

  • Georg Weizsäcker (author)
Chapter 7 discusses the “second-order listening belief”, which is the belief that the listener has about the talker’s first-order talking belief. It is the basis of the listener’s first-order listening belief and it may well be inaccurate. If so, this may explain possible biases of the first-order belief. Inaccurate or not, the second-order listening belief describes the meaning that the talker’s statement carries, from the perspective of the listener. The chapter also describes factors that reduce or increase the accuracy of understanding: the listener’s failure to realize the talker’s incentives to lie, the importance of context in the interpretation of a statement and, in particular, the ability to identify what information may be relevant to the talker.


Georg Weizsäcker

Professor of Economics at Humboldt-Universität zu Berlin

Georg Weizsäcker is a behavioral economist. He obtained his PhD in Business Economics at Harvard University, has taught at the London School of Economics and Political Science and at University College London, and is now Professor of Economics at Humboldt-Universität zu Berlin. His research lies in the areas of experimental economics, decision theory and applied microeconomics, with numerous contributions on the understanding and interpretations of other people's statements and choices. He is a Fellow of the European Economic Association, was appointed to numerous scientific committees and boards, and currently serves as the spokesperson of a research center on applied behavioral economics that is funded by the German Research Foundation.