Category Archives: Chapter 1

Fighting Extreme Poverty

Half a billion people live on less than 75 cents per day.  Termed the “ultrapoor,”  they often have too few resources to send their children to school or to save any money. What would it take to improve their conditions?  … Continue reading

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Would You Want Your Parents to Know?

A new experiment at Harvard’s Student Social Support R&D Lab indicates that students in a summer program did better when their parents received a weekly one-sentence about their children’s performance.  The study used a randomize experimental design with students in … Continue reading

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Perception and Measurement about Mental Illness

Does it surprise you to learn that a large longitudinal survey of parents has led to the conclusion that the rate of severe mental illness among children and adolescents has dropped considerably in the last generation?  The study involved ratings … Continue reading

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How to Assess Needs?

Who can best determine what people in a community need to improve their lives?  Asking them seems to be the most helpful part of a good needs assessment.  In Houston, a nonprofit named  Neighborhood Centers assesses needs by “spending hundreds … Continue reading

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Psychics and Pseudoscience

With concerns about reproducibility of results and exposure of instances of fraud–not to mention conflicting research results about what you should eat and how often you should be tested, it is easy to become cynical about the value of scientific … Continue reading

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Photos as Data

Do you store your photos on Google Photos?  Do you know that Google doesn’t just store, it also analyzes?  It scans pictures to identify such features as what you are wearing, what you are doing, and whether you are with … Continue reading

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The rush to celebrate “eureka” moments

Yet another article on the problem of replication.  If a study is designed with research methods that have been implemented appropriately and reported clearly, repeating that study with the same methods, the findings should be similar.  Right?  This has always been a … Continue reading

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