January 22, 2021 – Nilam Ram

Nilam Ram, Professor of Communication and Psychology. Stanford University

Changing How We Model Change: The Need for and Challenge of Flexibility 

Growth models are often used to reconcile theoretical propositions about development with longitudinal data. We use them extensively to describe and test hypotheses about  individuals’ behavioral trajectories (e.g., learning curves). In this talk I share how a deep-dive into the biologically-inspired von Bertalanffy growth model often used in management of fisheries is inspiring some reconceptualization of core empirical practices – in how we generate and accommodate plasticity in growth, in the role specific environmental factors play in growth, and even in how we should assess the relative fit of competing models.