– NeuroImage – Neural decoding of collective wisdom with multi-brain computing

See on Scoop.itScience and Sanity

Group decisions and even aggregation of multiple opinions lead to greater decision accuracy, a phenomenon known as collective wisdom. Little is known about the neural basis of collective wisdom and whether its benefits arise in late decision stages or in early sensory coding. Here, we use electroencephalography and multi-brain computing with twenty humans making perceptual decisions to show that combining neural activity across brains increases decision accuracy paralleling the improvements shown by aggregating the observers’ opinions. Although the largest gains result from an optimal linear combination of neural decision variables across brains, a simpler neural majority decision rule, ubiquitous in human behavior, results in substantial benefits. In contrast, an extreme neural response rule, akin to a group following the most extreme opinion, results in the least improvement with group size.

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