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Hutber's law

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Title: Hutber's law  
Author: World Heritage Encyclopedia
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Subject: Cobra effect, Self-defeating prophecy, Parable of the broken window, Adages, Perverse incentive
Collection: Adages, Risk Analysis
Publisher: World Heritage Encyclopedia

Hutber's law

Hutber's law states that "improvement means deterioration". It is founded on the cynical observation that a stated improvement actually hides a deterioration.

The term has seen wide application in business, engineering, and risk analysis. It was first articulated in the 1970s by Patrick Hutber, an economist and journalist who was the City Editor for The Sunday Telegraph in London from 1966 to 1979.

See also


  • Hutber's law quoted in the House of Commons, 1990
  • Passing reference to Hutber's law
  • "Not a Credit to the Banks." Daily Mail. 12 April 1992, p. 6
  • "Leading Article: Figuring it Out," The Guardian. 15 April 1994, p. 21.
  • The Scotsman. 13 Sept. 1994.
  • Tim Satchell. "Patience is the hardest virtue: Tim Satchell explains why it took two years to secure the money he was owed." Daily Telegraph. 20 January 2001, p. 06.
  • "Pay any price to beat poverty." New Statesman. 26 November 2001.
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