Lunchtime Workshop: Theory Informing Practice – Practice Informing Theory – Exploring the Everyday of Medical Decision-Making

Mon 12 June 2017 12:00 – 14:00 BST in Room 1.29 (Law Building)

This short lunchtime workshop aims to bring together Cardiff University scholars and postgraduate students from the School of Medicine, School of Psychology, School of Law and Politics and School of Social Sciences to explore the relationship between theory and practice in clinical decision-making.

From methodological innovations such as the Imitation Game aimed at drawing out specialist tacit knowledge in clinical (and other) settings, to ethnographic work in the clinic and the lab highly attuned to the ‘everyday’, these examples of Social Science research evidence a desire to both understand dimensions of clinical decision-making that cannot be understood at a distance as well as to make visible areas of clinical care that clinicians themselves may fail to appreciate. Such work then, also holds the aspiration to help enhance the delivery of care. Moreover, insights from the Cognitive and Behavioural Sciences, can help us to appreciate more deeply embedded processes at play in understanding the interaction between physiology and cognition, and the operation of cognitive biases and blind spots which powerfully influence our perception of events and decision-making in practice. In turn, for socio-legal scholars engaged in evaluating how legal systems intended to regulate the clinical sphere actually operate in the ‘real world’, to questions around the extent to which ‘ethical’, ‘legal’ and ‘non-clinical’ considerations also underpin clinical decision-making, the opportunity to have a dialogue with clinicians, sociologists of medicine and behavioural scientists will be critical. In similar force, ongoing research work in the School of Medicine at Cardiff around the area of clinical decision-making also evidences a strong appetite for, and implicit understanding of the relevance of work from the social sciences and behavioural studies. So too, does the expertise of those clinical researchers prove critical and necessary for social scientists, psychologists and lawyers alike in their aspiration for producing robust studies that prove relevant and useful to the clinical domain.

Bringing together four scholarly communities that are typically dispersed across Cardiff University, this informal workshop aims to provide a critical setting for exploring the critical intersections between closely related areas of work, as well as a stronger appreciation of different disciplinary and methodological approaches. The overarching aspiration is to generate a new and promising community of collaborative engagement.

Lead Discussants:

Professor Marc Buehner, PSYCH (Temporality and Perceptions of Causality)

Professor Harry Collins and Professor Rob Evans, SOCSI (SEE and Imitation Game)

Dr Rebecca Dimond, SOCSI (Patient and professional understanding of genetic risk)

Professor Andrew Finlay, MEDIC (Patients’ Perspectives; clinical decision-making and non-clinical factors).

Dr Stephen Smith, LAWPL (‘Conscience’ in medical decision-making)

Please note that the aim is for the lead discussants to discuss their work for a short period of time and for this to act as a critical stimulus for a more general discussion between workshop participants around potential intersections and broader perspectives. Lunchtime catering will also be provided to all those that sign up.

Sign Up: 


Please sign up via the Eventbrite link: https://www.eventbrite.co.uk/e/theory-informing-practice-practice-informing-theory-exploring-the-everyday-of-medical-decision-tickets-33775887589