Research events to explore human behavior around COVID-19

Tuesday, March 16, 2021

LAWRENCE – In the year since COVID-19 was designated a global pandemic, individuals and groups have found new ways to engage in thoughtful decision-making. University of Kansas social sciences researchers will offer their expertise in a two-part series, “Mapping Behavior Around the Virus: Behavioral Scientists Examine Activity amid COVID-19 Pandemic,” to explore lessons from the last year.

 The first event, at 4 p.m. Thursday, March 18, will feature four members of the Faculty Advising on COVID Team (FACT), whose research addresses the following questions:

  • What did we know before March 2020 about trends in human behavior amid natural disasters?
  • What did we learn in the course of the last year with COVID-19, locally and globally?
  • How can policymaking be responsive to prevent future problems?
  • What are the implications for the fall 2021 semester, based on data?

The presenters are Ward Lyles, associate professor of public affairs & administration; Derek Reed, associate professor of applied behavioral science; Tim Pleskac, professor of psychology, and Donna Ginther, Roy A. Roberts Distinguished Professor of Economics.

A second event, at 4 p.m. March 25, will focus on ways to build interpersonal understanding and compassion, inspired by KU research. The event will cover these topics:

  • What can we learn from behavioral sciences during this pandemic?
  • What is participatory modeling, and how is it used?
  • How does this work offer ideas for interpersonal understanding and policymaking?
  • How has this work engaged communities, and how does it serve them?
  • Where are opportunities for compassionate community on campus?

Presenters will be Vincent Francisco, Kansas Health Foundation Professor of Applied Behavioral Science; Kyle Metta, KU postdoctoral fellow in community systems, Center for Community Health and Development; Lyles; and Megah Shah and Radhia Abdirahman, both KU students.

Hosted by the Institute for Policy & Social Research and The Commons, both events are free and open to the public.

Link to Zoom Webinar Registration for March 18.

Link to Zoom Webinar Registration for March 25.