PREVIEW: Dr. Susan Michie’s Upcoming Plenary Presentation at IBTN 2018

Dr. Michie’s plenary presentation will outline the ways in which developing and applying ontologies relevant to behaviour change science and implementation science have the potential to advance both theoretical understanding and practical application.

Advancing the Sciences of Implementation and Behaviour Through Ontologies

Ontologies are systems for representing knowledge. They offer a way of structuring knowledge by building on a taxonomy of entities (labels, definitions, hierarchies) and then specifying the nature of the relationships between these entities (such as “is a”, “is part of”, or “positively influences”, etc.). My plenary presentation will outline the ways in which developing and applying ontologies relevant to behaviour change science and implementation science have the potential to advance both theoretical understanding and practical application.

I chose to present on this topic because behavioural trials are complex. When developing methods, this complexity needs to be recognised and incorporated. We want to simplify development, implementation, and synthesis and strive for the best fit possible in terms of their purpose. We want to maximize the new knowledge these methods can generate. Using ontologies to organise thinking and evidence about behavioural trials could prove very fruitful for the field.

The talk will also broach the importance of bringing together researchers from different disciplines to work together collaboratively to solve the methodological, theoretical, and translational problems we face in our efforts to advance our thinking about, and practice of, developing and evaluating behaviour change interventions.

Read more about Dr. Michie’s groundbreaking work with ontologies

Further reading: Dr. Michie’s recent publications

Evaluating the effectiveness of behaviour change techniques in health-related behaviour: a scoping review of methods used  Michie et al. Translational Behavioral Medicine DOI 10.1093/tbm/ibx019

The Human Behaviour-Change Project: harnessing the power of artificial intelligence and machine learning for evidence synthesis and interpretation.  

Michie et al. Implementation Science (2017) 12:121   DOI 10.1186/s13012-017-0641-5

Optimising the value of the evidence generated in implementation science: the use of ontologies to address the challenges

Michie & Johnston Implementation Science (2017) 12:131 DOI 10.1186/s13012-017-0660-2