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.
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
Michie et al. Implementation Science (2017) 12:121 DOI 10.1186/s13012-017-0641-5
Michie & Johnston Implementation Science (2017) 12:131 DOI 10.1186/s13012-017-0660-2