In a bureaucracy, all decisions are arrived at by a process that involves many people. There is no one person who has the authority to decide whether a project will process or not. As a consequence, in bureaucracies, risky projects are never undertaken.

The conclusion follows logically from the premises if which one of the following is assumed?

[A]. All projects in a bureaucracy require risk.
[B]. Decisive individuals choose not to work in a bureaucracy.
[C]. An individual who has decision-making power will take risks.
[D]. The only risky projects undertaken are those for which a single individual has decision-making power.
[E]. People sometimes take risks as individuals that they would not take as part of a group.
Answer: D

You should be able to pre-phrase a pretty close answer. If no risky projects are decided upon in bureaucracies, and the bureaucratic decision making involves “many people,” then the author is likely assuming that decisions to undertake risky projects are only made by a single individual.

(A) Try the Denial Test: What if not all projects in a bureaucracy involve risk? Does the argument suffer? No; the conclusion is about the fate of risky projects, but it doesn’t rely on the notion that all projects in a bureaucracy involve risk—some may not without affecting the logic of the argument.

(B) What “type” of people work in bureaucracies is beyond the scope, and certainly not a crucial factor in making this argument.

(C) contains a few scope shifts: First, taking risks may be similar but is not necessarily the same thing as undertaking risky projects. Second, the choice concerns an individual with decision making power, whereas the stimulus indirectly refers to a situation where a single individual has all of the power. If you’re unsure, try the Denial Test again: It’s possible for an individual with decision-making power to not take risks, and for the conclusion to still remain valid.

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