What Is Groupthink?

Groupthink occurs in politics, government, and policy making when members of a group (political party, political movement, special interest group(s), legislative caucus, etc.) prioritize conformity, consensus of the group over the individual, and unity over unbiased analysis, critical thinking, and dissenting opinions, all in the interest of protecting the influence, access, and power of the group. Because of its emphasis on conformity, and unity, groupthink can, and many times does, lead to flawed, or even irrational decision making.

In its worst form, groupthink is a cancer that can lead to politics not being done well, ultimately threatening the survival of the body politic and the society that it serves.

Why Is Groupthink Harmful?

There are three reasons why groupthink in politics, government, and policy making is harmful:

  • groupthink discourages diverse perspectives because of its emphasis on conformity of thought;
  • oftentimes, groupthink can lead to analysis based on false assumptions grounded in biased analysis or due to a lack of critical thinking that challenges accepted assumptions and perspectives;
  • groupthink can lead to hasty decision making that is based on the interests of the group rather than the greater good.

How PFTH Challenges Groupthink

  • Politics From The Heartland Blog
  • Politics From The Heartland on Substack (subscription)
  • Rural public education research, advocacy and consulting
  • Rural economic development research, advocacy and consulting
  • Political/geopolitical risk analysis and consulting with respect to economic and political impact on rural economies
  • Nonpartisan political advocacy
  • Workshops, Seminars, and Public Speaking.

All research and consulting work is fee based. Free initial complementary consultation (one hour). Fees are negotiable, based on project.