Human Behavior and Leadership

How Should Science Influence Policy?

Across the globe, leaders are faced with complex decisions with incredibly far-reaching impacts, particularly in the context of science and public policy. Most visible in recent years are topics such as COVID-19 policy and climate and energy policy. Questions arise about how leaders and policy makers should use scientific information, and what “scientific information” is robust enough to form the basis of public policy (see also Co-Lab on Open Science). How should political leaders make decisions when science is not a static good, but rather an evolving, dynamic body of work? Should scientists provide frameworks around the information they provide, or focus more on providing raw data? Using our interdisciplinary toolkit, what insights can we gain about governance, reward mechanisms, organizational design, and culture? How can governance structures be organized to best manage the divided interest of leaders in terms of benefits to the group and self-interest/self-aggrandizement? Human behavior and leadership remains an extremely important topic to the Institute and one on which our inter-disciplinary toolkit provides unique insight. 

By the end of the event it felt as if we'd all been on a journey together and that we trusted each other to speak our minds, learn from other disciplines, listen to people who thought differently, have respect for one another and a genuine feeling of camaraderie.

Rosalind Arden
Research Fellow at the Centre for Philosophy of Natural and Social Science, London School of Economics

Collaborator Spotlight
Founder, George Washington University Regulatory Studies Center
George Washington University

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