Association for Behavior Analysis International

The Association for Behavior Analysis International® (ABAI) is a nonprofit membership organization with the mission to contribute to the well-being of society by developing, enhancing, and supporting the growth and vitality of the science of behavior analysis through research, education, and practice.


46th Annual Convention; Washington DC; 2020

Event Details

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Invited Symposium #346
CE Offered: BACB
Diversity submission SUSTAINABILITY: Growing the Behavioral Biome: Putting a Strategic Plan into Action
Sunday, May 24, 2020
4:00 PM–4:50 PM
Marriott Marquis, Level M4, Liberty I-L
Domain: Translational
Chair: Thomas G. Szabo (Florida Institute of Technology)
CE Instructor: Thomas G. Szabo, Ph.D.

The first presentation will give an integrated analysis of behavioral science research on climate change and greenhouse gas emissions. The second presentation will provide an overview of the research programs, organizations providing funding, and community interventions that have been compiled by the Coalition of Behavioral Science Organizations Climate Change Task Force. The third presentation will provide an overview of the resources required to accomplish the goals of the task force and how to expand the efforts.

Instruction Level: Intermediate
Target Audience:

Board certified behavior analysts; licensed psychologists; graduate students.

Learning Objectives: At the conclusion of the presentation, participants will be able to: (1) identify types of research that have the potential to advance policy action related to climate change; (2) navigate the resources that have been created by the task force; (3) identify effective methods for recruiting and coordinating volunteer participation.
Diversity submission Identifying the Need for Expansion of Behavioral Research on Climate Change
ANTHONY BIGLAN (Oregon Research Institute)
Abstract: This paper will present a thorough and integrated analysis of existing behavioral science research on climate change and greenhouse gas emissions. It will begin by contrasting the amount of money being invested in physical science research relevant to climate change with the much smaller amount being invested in behavioral science research, despite the fact that addressing the problem is almost entirely a matter of changing human behavior. This discrepancy in funding that supports behavioral science research translates to a gap in policy solutions based in behavioral science. Additionally, we will provide a review of the extent to which research is identifying effective and scalable strategies for affecting climate-relevant policy and behavior. We will then describe the kind of experimental research that is most likely to result in scalable change. Finally, we will present a strategic plan for greatly increasing funding for large-interdisciplinary programs of experimental analysis of strategies for affecting climate-relevant policy and behavior.
Anthony Biglan, Ph.D., is a Senior Scientist at Oregon Research Institute. He is the author of The Nurture Effect: How the Science of Human Behavior Can Improve our Lives and Our World.   Dr. Biglan has been conducting research on the development and prevention of child and adolescent problem behavior for the past 30 years. His work has included studies of the risk and protective factors associated with tobacco, alcohol, and other drug use; high-risk sexual behavior; and antisocial behavior. He has conducted numerous experimental evaluations of interventions to prevent tobacco use both through school-based programs and community-wide interventions. And, he has evaluated interventions to prevent high-risk sexual behavior, antisocial behavior, and reading failure.   In recent years, his work has shifted to more comprehensive interventions that have the potential to prevent the entire range of child and adolescent problems. He and colleagues at the Center for Advanced Study in the Behavioral Sciences published a book summarizing the epidemiology, cost, etiology, prevention, and treatment of youth with multiple problems (Biglan et al., 2004). He is a former president of the Society for Prevention Research. He was a member of the Institute of Medicine Committee on Prevention, which released its report in 2009 documenting numerous evidence-based preventive interventions that can prevent multiple problems. As a member of Oregon’s Alcohol and Drug Policy Commission, he is helping to develop a strategic plan for implementing comprehensive evidence-based interventions throughout Oregon.
Diversity submission We’re All in This Together: The Road to Research Collaboration, Funding, and Community Interventions
HOLLY SENIUK (Behavior Analyst Certification Board)
Abstract: Since 2018, the Coalition of Behavioral Science Organizations Climate Change Task Force (BSC-CCTF) has been reviewing the behavioral research on climate change, as described in the previous paper. In addition to reviewing the literature the task force is working to create resources that will aid in pushing the needle forward on behavior science research related to greenhouse gas emissions and policy change. Through a network of volunteers, the task force’s committees have assembled an evolving collection of research institutions, funding sources, and examples of community interventions addressing the development of policies and strategies to reduce carbon emissions. The goal of these collections is to establish a database that will help propel the work of the task force forward by identifying potential funding sources, collaborators, and community intervention models that could benefit from experimental evaluation. This paper will provide audience members with a roadmap of the work thus far and an overview of the research programs, foundations/institutions providing funding, and the community level interventions that have been compiled in this process.

Holly Seniuk, Ph.D., BCBA-D, LBA is the Ethics Disciplinary Manager at the Behavior Analyst Certification Board. Dr. Seniuk graduated with her doctorate from the University of Nevada, Reno in 2013 under the mentorship of Dr. Larry Williams and has been a Board Certified Behavior Analyst since 2010. Dr. Seniuk has previously worked as an Assistant Professor at the University of New Brunswick, Fredericton where she developed an undergraduate level behavior analysis program and as the Project Coordinator for the Nevada PBIS Technical Assistance Center, working on the Facility-Wide PBIS Project providing behavioral systems support to residential juvenile corrections and youth mental health facilities as well as youth parole. She has over 13 years of experience working in a variety of clinical settings including early intervention, schools, mental health, and intellectual disabilities. Dr. Seniuk has served on numerous boards and committees including the Nevada Association for Behavior Analysis, Atlantic Provinces Association for Behavior Analysis, Behaviorists for Social Responsibility, and the Coalition of Behavioral Science Organizations Climate Change Task Force.

Diversity submission Building a Network: What It Takes to Make It Happen
ANDREW BONNER (University of Florida )
Abstract: One of the greatest challenges in moving forward the work on behavioral science research on climate change and related community interventions and policy involves coordinating efforts in an efficient and systematic way without losing momentum. This presentation will provide an overview of the resources and effort required to accomplish the goals of the task force by sharing the model that has been developed and implemented. This includes recruitment of volunteers to support research endeavors, as well as, committee work related to the development of searchable databases for research institutions, funding agencies, and community interventions that aim to address issues related to greenhouse gas emissions. The BSC-CCTF has made significant progress in the last two years that would not be possible without the collective effort of many. We will share the process for recruiting, training, and retaining volunteers. Finally, next steps for expanding and scaling up this work will be explored

Andrew is a doctoral student in behavior analysis at the University of Florida. He is also a member of the Behavior Sciences Coalition Climate Change Task Force. His primary research interests are in the areas of developing community interventions to reduce greenhouse gas emission. To that end, he evaluates the determinants for pro-environmental behavior at the individual level, develops interventions, and then evaluates their effects always with an eye toward scalability and widespread adoption.




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