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Common sense is always a good thing, isn't it? Maybe not. Although common sense is extremely useful for dealing with everyday problem solving, when applied to the kind of large-scale problems that arise in government, business, policy, and marketing, it can suffer from systematic failures.

Duncan Watts, PhD '97, principal researcher at Microsoft Research and A.D. White Professor-at-Large (2013-2019), gave a public lecture at Cornell Sept. 9, 2014. Watts is considered to be among the vanguard in the area of network theory.