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History is replete with well-intentioned actions and policies that have resulted in dramatic unintended consequences. We review evidence that several psychological biases result in an overly narrow focus on the intended consequences of acts and, consequently, tendencies to ignore or give too little weight to potential unintended consequences. First, a motivated desire for the intended consequences of acts can blind people to the likelihood of alternative possibilities. We review evidence thatdoi:10.1111/j.1751-9004.2012.00435.x fatcat:ko6xjekd6zahbnpx6ddemilxfu