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CECAN Seminar: Addressing Complexity in Nexus Issues – A Case-Based Approach to Evaluation Research

London, 23 Feb 2017, 1pm
Brian Castellani

Thursday 23rd February 2017, 13:00 – 14:00, BEIS, 3 Whitehall Place, London, SW1A 2AW

Presenter: Professor Brian Castellani

Seminar Overview:

Drawing upon two recent studies – one on health trajectories and the other on grid reliability – Brian will demonstrate how evaluation researchers can use case-based complexity to more effectively model nexus issues across time/space. More specifically, seminar participants will use these two case studies to explore a new Case-Based Complexity App that Brian and colleagues have developed, which researchers can use to:

  • treat the variables in a database (big-data or otherwise) as a nexus of complex and inter-dependent factors;
  • use this nexus of factors to construct a nexus profile for each and every case in a database – which can be cross-sectional or longitudinal;
  • cluster these nexus profiles into the major and minor clusters or trends across some defined framework of evaluated time/space;
  • use these clusters/trends to explore how a nexus issue manifests itself as an array of multiple trajectories and divergent outcomes;
  • and finally, use these results to improve the differential utility or impact of a policy or public service.

Presenter Briography:

Brian Castellani is Professor of Sociology and Lead of the Complexity in Health and Infrastructure Group at Kent State University, as well as Adjunct Professor of Psychiatry, Northeast Ohio Medical University and co-editor of the Complexity in Social Science series, Routledge.

Trained as a clinical psychologist, methodologist and sociologist, Brian has spent the past ten years developing a new case-based approach to modeling complex social systems, which he and his colleagues have used to help practitioners and policy makers address and improve complex public health issues such as community wellbeing, stress and coping (allostatic load), comorbid depression in primary care, addiction, medical education and grid reliability. Recently, Brian received a systems science scholarship from the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation to present at the 2016 AcademyHealth Conference – the leading organization in the States for health services researchers, policymakers, and health care practitioners and stakeholders.

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