Welcome to It’s Your Choice, a blog by the Society for Judgment and Decision Making.
Our ambition is bold and simple: we are committed to the dissemination of cutting-edge research related to all aspects of judgment and decision making. Many learned societies are publishing their blogs. Chances are you came across an insightful post from Christian Jarrett on the BPS Research Digest or from the APS’s Minds for Business blog. Why joining in the crowd, you may ask? Because we believe that although our field has something unique to say, we have yet to have our own forum to reach a wider audience.
Many of us have long recognised the potential impact of JDM research on real-world issues. Alongside more “academic-focused” research projects, we ourselves developed lines of work focussing on topics relevant for practice ranging from vaccination acceptance and the determinants of vaccine uptake, breast cancer prevention, or offender profilers’ use verbal probabilities. But doing JDM research that has the potential to be relevant outside academia is not enough, not anymore. These days we also have to demonstrate how, where, and to whom our research made a difference. Whether that pressure comes from our funders and bosses or from a more autonomous desire to make a difference through our work, we need to engage.
Whereas a couple of decades ago, researchers could proclaim their research was “basic” and hence leave it up to others to find a way to make it useful and applicable in the “real world” (a.k.a. outside the realm of fantastical academia!), few have this luxury in today’s reality. These days, the question is no longer whether we should engage with the world beyond our towers, but rather how can we do it better. Yet graduate research training still mostly involves learning how to do research well and often very little emphasis on how to work with people who might be interested in our findings.
Admittedly, this is a wider issue that won’t be solved by writing a blog post. But we have to start somewhere. If we want to reach out further than our own circles of colleagues in our own colloquial area of JDM research, we need to begin the conversation. This is where It’s Your Choice comes into play. Our goal is to create a platform through which JDM researchers can communicate their findings to a wider audience, including other JDM researchers, policy-makers, educators, interested members of the lay public, and so on.
Unlike other similar platforms, we will not be writing the posts ourselves (so we can keep up with our own research work!). Rather we want to engage the community (you!) in promoting its best JDM research via accessible and concise blog posts. As IYC editors, we will strive to be inclusive of all SJDM members as well as researchers who explore topics of broad relevance to JDM. We are looking for contributions from across academic disciplines, including (but not limited to) psychology, behavioral economics, medicine, political science, law, etc. We will also strive to include diverse perspectives (e.g. gender, ethnic/racial, institutional, career stage). Lastly, we would like to encourage discussions about open science and the robustness of our research findings.
To begin with, we will review the latest literature to highlight what we see as important, robust JDM research with clear implications for practice and/or for advancing the field. We will contact authors and invite them to write a short (800 – 1000 words), easily digestible summary of their research, methodological, and/or theoretical advances.
But if this is to become a successful and interesting conversation, we also need your input in highlighting potential important research advances, which you believe should be featured on the blog or important practical issues for which JDM could or should have a say. It may be that you got excited by reading a recent article and believe it should be featured on the blog. If so, do reach out to us via our Twitter feed or our Facebook page. Alternatively, if you would like to contribute a post yourself, you can submit a pitch here.
We plan to publish mostly research briefs, but we also want to be open to other types of posts which would contribute to our main dissemination and impact goals. Alternative posts include:
- methodology posts discussing important issues relevant to conducting of JDM research or introducing new methodological procedures for studying JDM.
- explainers which aim to provide the background knowledge necessary to understand current topical JDM research
- opinion columns where authors are free to express their views on hot topics relevant to JDM
- reflective commentaries describing a practical “real-world” JDM issues
If you get invited to write a post but don’t know where to start, you can find some guidance here. Some of us have a knack for writing accessible prose and some of us find it very difficult. The public relations and communication team at your university may be able to help as well (so will your family or any contact outside academia): you can always send them your draft for comments!
Needless to say, we look forward to beginning this exciting journey with you. We see IYC becoming a key resource for promoting state-of-the-art research about judgments and decision-making both within and outside our community of knowledge.
On August 21st 2017, we will publish our first guest explainer post by Dan Goldstein, the editor of Decision Science News and former President of the Society for Judgment and Decision Making, so keep an eye out! Or if you do not want to miss any of our posts, you can subscribe via email (see the side bar), follow us on twitter, or like our Facebook page.
From the editors/curators: