J. Scott Armstrong

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J. Scott Armstrong
Born (1937-03-26) March 26, 1937 (age 78)
Residence U.S.
Nationality American
Fields Marketing, advertising
Institutions The Wharton School, University of Pennsylvania
Alma mater MIT Sloan School of Management
Carnegie Mellon
Lehigh University

J. Scott Armstrong (born March 26, 1937) is an author, forecasting and marketing expert,[1][2] [3] and a professor of Marketing at the Wharton School of the University of Pennsylvania.

Education and background[edit]

Armstrong received his B.A. in applied science (1959) and his B.S. in industrial engineering (1960) from Lehigh University. In 1965, he received his M.S. in industrial administration from Carnegie-Mellon University. He received his Ph.D. in management from the MIT Sloan School of Management in 1968.[4] He has taught in Thailand, Switzerland, Sweden, New Zealand, Australia, South Africa, Argentina, Japan, and other countries.[4]

His full biography and published papers can be found at: JScottArmstrong.com.


  • Armstrong examined the methods used by the IPCC to make projections. In an article published in Energy & Environment, he claimed that the IPCC and climate scientists have ignored the scientific literature on forecasting principles.[3][7] Armstrong wrote:
"When we inspected the 17 [forecasting] articles, we found that none of them referred to the scientific literature on forecasting methods. It is difficult to understand how scientific forecasting could be conducted without reference to the research literature on how to make forecasts. One would expect to see empirical justification for the forecasting methods that were used. We concluded that climate forecasts are informed by the modelers’ experience and by their models—but that they are unaided by the application of forecasting principles." (page 1015)[3] A rebuttal published in the journal concluded that Interfaces:
"Green and Armstrong (2007, p.997) also concluded that the thousands of refereed scientific publications that comprise the basis of the IPCC reports and represent the state of scientific knowledge on past, present and future climates "were not the outcome of scientific procedures." Such cavalier statements appear to reflect an overt attempt by the authors of those reports to cast doubt about the reality of human-caused global warming ... "[8]
  • Armstrong extended a Global Warming Challenge to Al Gore in June 2007,[9] in the style of the Simon–Ehrlich wager. Each side was to place $10,000 ($20,000 total) in trust, with the winner being determined by future temperature change. Gore declined the wager, stating that he does not gamble.[10] Climatologist Gavin Schmidt described Armstrong's wager as "essentially a bet on year to year weather noise" rather than on climate change.[11]
  • Armstrong has published articles and testified before Congress on forecasts of polar bear populations (testimony), arguing that previous estimates were too flawed to justify listing the bear as an endangered species.[6][12][13] In an evaluation of Armstrong and other authors’ criticism of polar bear population forecasts, Amstrup and other authors, writing a response in the journal Interfaces, concluded that all of the claims made by Armstrong, which included lack of independence of the USGS, were either mistaken or misleading.[8]

Marketing and advertising[edit]

Armstrong's book Persuasive Advertising: Evidence-based Principles was published by Palgrave Macmillan in 2010. In it, Armstrong presents 194 principles designed to increase the persuasiveness of advertisements. The principles were derived from empirical data, expert opinion, and observation. They are organized and indexed under ten general principles (e.g. emotion, attention), and those ten principles are further grouped into three categories: strategy, general tactics, and media-specific tactics.[14]

In 1989, a University of Maryland study ranked Armstrong among the top 15 marketing professors in the U.S. based on a study using peer ratings, citations, and publications.[15][self-published source?] He serves or has served on editorial positions for the Journal of the Academy of Marketing Science, the Journal of Business Research, Interfaces, and other journals. He was awarded the Society for Marketing Advances Distinguished Scholar Award for 2000.

Public Policy[edit]

Armstrong also has published several papers dealing with public policy issues ranging from the effectiveness of government mandated disclaimers the moral hazards of executive compensation.[16]

  • In Evidence on the Effects of Mandatory Disclaimers in Advertising Armstrong concluded that government mandated disclaimer can be ineffective or even harmful by encouraging negative behavior. This may because it reduces the buyer’s sense of responsibility and care, thus resulting in more risky behavior. The free market should fix labelling problems by itself as sellers have a long-term interest to ensure the satisfaction of buyers and buyers themselves will seek to find out information about the product.
  • In another study, Armstrong concluded that that forecasts that the government used as evidence to put future polar bear populations on the endangered species list did not adhere to the majority of relevant scientific forecasting principles and thus should be rejected.[17]
  • Armstrong made headlines in 2007 by challenging Al Gore to a $10,000 bet on yearly temperatures, which he refers to as "The Global Warming Challenge".[9] He has also testified before Congress on flaws in forecasts of polar bear populations.[6][12]

Selected publications[edit]


  • Persuasive Advertising: Evidence-based Principles
  • Long-Range Forecasting
  • Principles of Forecasting: A Handbook for Researchers and Practitioners




Scientific methods[edit]

Organizational Behavior[edit]

Peer Review in Science[edit]

Educational Method[edit]

Strategic Planning[edit]

Social Responsibility[edit]

Applied Statistics[edit]


Armstrong is a founder or co-founder of these organizations


News media


  1. ^ sueddeutsche.de GmbH, Munich, Germany. "Wahlforschung – Zauberformeln für den Wählerwillen – Wissen". sueddeutsche.de. Retrieved 2010-04-19. 
  2. ^ topeditor (2007-09-05). "Grading the Forecasts of ‘Experts’". Blogs.wsj.com. Retrieved 2010-04-19. 
  3. ^ a b c "spiked | Put your money where your ‘myth’ is". Spiked-online.com. Retrieved 2010-04-19. 
  4. ^ a b "Welcome To". Jscottarmstrong.com. Retrieved 2010-04-19. 
  5. ^ (Journal of Forecasting, 1,1982, p. 1–2)
  6. ^ a b c "Professor Scott Armstrong Exposing Inaccuracies in Polar Bear Studies". News of Interest.TV. Retrieved 2010-04-19. 
  7. ^ http://ff.org/images/stories/sciencecenter/armstrong_presentation.pdf
  8. ^ a b Amstrup, Steven C. , Casswell H., DeWeaver E., Stirling I., Douglas D.C., Marcot B.G., Hunter C.M. (2009). "Rebuttal of "Polar Bear Population Forecasts: A Public-Policy Forecasting Audit"" (PDF). Interfaces 39: 353–369. doi:10.1287/inte.1090.0444. 
  9. ^ a b Schapiro, Rich (2008-03-01). "Penn prof still hot to tackle Al Gore on global warming". New York: NY Daily News. Retrieved 2010-04-19. 
  10. ^ Hume, Brit (2007-06-27). "One Expert Is Willing to Bet Money Al Gore Is Wrong About Global Warming – Brit Hume | Special Report". FOXNews.com. Retrieved 2010-04-16. 
  11. ^ Gavin Schmidt (20 July 2007). "Green and Armstrong’s scientific forecast". RealClimate. Retrieved 11 April 2014. 
  12. ^ a b "Federal Polar Bear Research Critically Flawed, Forecasting Expert Asserts". ScienceDaily. 2008-05-10. Retrieved 2010-04-19. 
  13. ^ "Federal Polar Bear Research Critically Flawed, Argue Forecasting Experts in INFORMS Journal – INFORMS: The Institute For Operations Research and The Management Sciences". Informs. Retrieved 2010-04-19. 
  14. ^ Armstrong, J. Scott, Persuasive Advertising, Palgrave Macmillan
  15. ^ "J. Scott Armstrong, Professor of Marketing – The Wharton School of the University of Pennsylvania". Marketing.wharton.upenn.edu. 2008-11-18. Retrieved 2010-04-16. 
  16. ^ Armstrong, Scott (30 March 2012). "Evidence on the Effects of Mandatory Disclaimers in Advertising". Journal of Public Policy & Marketing. 
  17. ^ Armstrong, Scott; Green, Kesten; Soon, Willie (September–October 2008). "Polar Bear Population Forecasts: A Public-Policy Forecasting Audit". Interfaces 38 (38): 382–405.