We are told, “Data from 329 aerospace engineers and 72 neurosurgeons suggests they are not necessarily cleverer than general population”:
Researchers examined data from an international cohort of 329 aerospace engineers and 72 neurosurgeons who completed 12 tasks online using the Great British Intelligence Test (GBIT) from the Cognitron platform, as well as answering questions around their age, sex and levels of experience in their speciality.
The tasks examined various aspects of cognition, including planning and reasoning, working memory, attention, and emotion processing abilities. The researchers then compared the results against those previously gathered from more than 18,000 members of the British public.
The findings, which were published in the festive edition of the BMJ, reveal that only neurosurgeons showed a significant difference, with quicker problem-solving speed but slower memory recall compared with the general population.Nicola Davis, “Brain surgeons and rocket scientists no brighter than the rest of us, study finds” at The Guardian (December 13, 2021)
But doesn’t that make “evolution” a bigger mystery than ever? If the alleged smartest people aren’t necessarily the future, how did things get to be as they are?
Note: This was published in the Christmas edition of the British Medical Journal, which means it could be something of a joke. But still, a pause for thought.