International Early Stage Researcher Training School on Applying Expert  
Judgement Methodologies to Real Problems  

ICMAT, Campus de Cantoblanco, Madrid   

April 12 - 15, 2015   

Instituto de Ciencias Matemáticas
C/ Nicolás Cabrera, 13-15
  Campus Cantoblanco - UAM
  28049 Madrid, Spain
  Telephone: +34 91 2999700


Content of the Doctoral School

The Doctoral School would offer the following lectures and activities:

  • Introductory session setting structured quantitative expert judgement within the context of quantitative risk assessment and decision making.
  • Lectures including demonstrations and break-out sessions on:
    • The Expert Judgement Problem: its history and context, including scientific and political background.
    • Cooke’s Classical Model.
    • Bayesian Approaches.
    • The Behavioural Background: System 1 and System 2 Thinking, Heuristics and Biases.
    • The process of expert judgement studies.
    • Using software to conduct and interpret expert judgement studies.
    • Incorporation of expert judgement data into risk and decision analyses.
    • The political processes of drawing expert judgement studies into societal decision making.
    • Design, reporting and peer review of expert judgement studies.
    • Research fronts in expert judgement theory.

      Note that there is no intention that these topics would be treated to equal depth. The major focus would be on the process and techniques of conducting expert judgement studies.

  • Case studies of applications of expert judgement in domains such as:
    • Volcanic risk assessment.
    • Nuclear Safety.
    • Food safety.
    • Aviation safety.
    • Assessment of Environmental Impacts.
    • Energy planning.

  • Exercises using Expert Judgement software, specifically Excalibur.
  • An Experiential Exercise in which each participant gives his or her judgements on a range of unknowns that will become resolved through the period of the School. During this exercise each participant will experience firstly how it feels to give judgements of uncertainty unaided, then training in the process of giving such judgements, a structured elicitation and finally calibration of their judgements against the resolutions of the uncertainty.
  • An extensive group exercise based around a hypothetical but realistically complex scenario in which the students would experience the process of developing an expert judgement protocol, identifying calibration questions, elicitation of expert judgements, producing probabilities capable of being fed into a risk or decision analysis.
  • A feature of the School is that each day, coffee will be taken in small discussion groups with assigned mentors. The aims of these sessions are to reflect on the course and its application to their personal research topics and applications and the ways that the understandings and skills being developed in the School may be introduced in these. It is expected that these discussions will be carried on informally at other times during the School.

Prior to the course, the students will be expected to have completed an introductory session on the Action’s Moodle training site. This will be roughly equivalent to a further 3 hours of training and will be supported through a forum on the site with interaction from one or more of the tutors on the course. During their time in Madrid, they will be supported with other training material on the same site. The students will be provided with electronic copies of notes, slides, case studies, and other material. Copies will also be available on the Moodle site. Note that students will be expected to bring their own laptops, capable of running Windows software, either directly or through emulation. The discussion forum on the Action’s Moodle site will continue to run in the weeks after it to continue discussion and share experiences in applying the ideas back in their research institutes and universities.

All content of the course will be archived in the Moodle site.






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