What’s the difference between Intuition and Bias and some insights on Socio Economic classification by Section A_Group _4_Abhijeet Kumar_13PGP001

One of the interesting question that popped out during the class discussion was – what was the difference between intuition and bias?

Let’s first understand independently what exactly intuition and bias are.

As per free dictionary, intuition can be simply defined as ‘The act or faculty of knowing or sensing without the use of rational processes’.

And at the same time, bias is ‘A preference or an inclination, especially one that inhibits impartial judgment’.

As per Nobel-winning psychologist Daniel Kahneman — author of the indispensable Thinking, Fast and Slow, intuition is a subset of bias and explains the same as : ‘One of the most fascinating examples of heuristics and biases is what we call intuition — a complex cluster of cognitive processes, sometimes helpful but often misleading. He notes that thoughts come to mind in one of two ways: Either by “orderly computation,” which involves a series of stages of remembering rules and then applying them, or by perception, an evolutionary function that allows us to predict outcomes based on what we’re perceiving. (For instance, seeing a woman’s angry face helps us predict the general sentiment and disposition of what she’s about to say.) It is the latter mode that precipitates intuition.’

The same time there isn’t much concrete research to clearly differentiate between intuition and bias.  Thus a perfect research topic for a psychology student..!!

One among the many other interesting discussed topics included the Socio Economic classification. This is used by most media researchers and brand managers to understand the Indian consuming class.

Originally developed by IRMB International as a way of understanding market segments, and consumer behavior it was standardized and adopted by Market Research Society of India in mid-1980 as a measure of socio economic class and is now commonly used a market segmentation tool in India.

In the older version, the SEC Classification consists of two grids-

ü  The Urban SEC Grid, which uses Education levels and Occupational criteria of the Chief Wage Earner (CWE) of a household as measures to determine socio-economic classification, and segments urban India into 7 groups (A1 to E2) and

ü  The Rural SEC Grid, which uses Education and Type of House (pucca, semi-pucca, and katcha) as measures of socio-economic class, and segments rural India into 4 groups (R1,R2,R3,R4).

The older SEC classification is based on the assumption that higher education leads to higher income thus higher consuming potential. But we know that this may not be true always. A trader or a retailer with no qualification can earn more income than a Post graduate executive, but SEC will categorize the traders/retailers not as SEC A1or A2.

To address this concern the Government came up with a new classification method that is based on two variables:

ü  Education of the Chief Earner

ü  The number of Consumer durables (pre-decided from a list) owned by the family. The list has 11 items ranging from “electricity and agricultural land” to cars and air conditioners.

The detailed new SEC classification can be found at : http://www.mruc.net/new-demographic-map-of-india.pdf

Section A_Group _4_Abhijeet Kumar_13PGP001. 

 -Session 2.


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