Saturday, September 15, 2018

An Open Letter to Tren Griffin

[I tried quite hard to email this privately. I post it here only because Griffin has, as far as I can tell, been very successful in scrubbing his email address from the web. Please forward it to him if you can figure out how.]

Mr. Griffin:

A colleague forwarded me your post, https://25iq.com/2018/09/08/risk-uncertainty-and-ignorance-in-investing-and-business-lessons-from-richard-zeckhauser/.  I enjoyed it, and Zeckhauser definitely deserves everyone's highest praise. 

However your post misses the bigger picture.  Diebold, Doherty, and Herring conceptualized and promoted the "Known, Unknown, Unknowable" (KuU) framework for financial risk management, which runs blatantly throughout your twelve "Lessons From Richard Zeckhauser".  Indeed the key Zeckhauser article on which you draw appeared in our book, "The Known, the Unknown and the Unknowable in Financial Risk Management", https://press.princeton.edu/titles/9223.html, which we also conceptualized, and for which we solicited the papers and authors, mentored them as regards integrating their thoughts into the KuU framework, etc.  The book was published almost a decade ago by Princeton University Press. 

I say all this not only to reveal my surprise and annoyance at your apparent unawareness, but also, and more constructively, because you and your readers may be interested in our KuU book, which has many other interesting parts (great as the Zeckhauser part may be), and which
, moreover, is more than the sum of its parts. A pdf of the first chapter has been available for many years at http://assets.press.princeton.edu/chapters/s9223.pdf.

Sincerely,