By Todd A. Ward, PhD, BCBA-D
Founding Editor, bSci21.org
Drs. Mark Mattaini and Molli Luke provide a provocative editorial for the newest issue of Behavior and Social Issues, titled “‘Saving the World’ with a Matrix.” Their goal is to answer the question of why behavior analysts aren’t doing more to save the world — a question posed by Skinner decades earlier.
According to Mattaini and Luke, there is a real demand for behavior analysts interested in behavioral systems analysis but such individuals are few and far between (but see two JOBM special issues on systems here and here). Such a state of affairs is a bit ironic as anyone familiar with Skinner’s writings might view the amelioration of social issues as something of a mission statement for behavior analysis.
As a first step towards a solution, Dr. Luke has conducted a series of interviews with prominent behavior analysts currently working in the before-mentioned areas to examine obstacles and potential solutions to the issue. In her long list of findings, one theme predominates — the need for interdisciplinary study, in coursework, practical experience, and research.
Mattaini and Luke aim to build a matrix of sorts that will guide best practices applicable to 26 different sectors of society. The matrix itself can then serve as a spring board for future research to empirically determine optimal methods of embedding the science and practice of behavior analysis into larger society.
To read more about Mattaini and Luke’s project, visit the hyperlink at the top of the page.
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Todd A. Ward, PhD, BCBA-D is President of bSci21 Media, LLC, which owns bSci21.org and BAQuarterly.com. Todd serves as an Associate Editor of the Journal of Organizational Behavior Management and as an editorial board member for Behavior and Social Issues. He has worked as a behavior analyst in day centers, residential providers, homes, and schools, and served as the director of Behavior Analysis Online at the University of North Texas. Todd’s areas of expertise include writing, entrepreneurship, Acceptance & Commitment Therapy, Instructional Design, Organizational Behavior Management, and ABA therapy. Todd can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.