Home > Publications . Search All . Browse All . Country . Browse PSC Pubs . PSC Report Series

PSC In The News

RSS Feed icon

Bailey and Danziger's War on Poverty book reviewed in NY Review of Books

Bloomberg cites MTF data in story on CDC's anti-smoking ads for e-cigarettes

Bound says notion that foreign college students are displacing U.S. students "isn't right"

Highlights

U-M ranked #1 in Sociology of Population by USN&WR's "Best Graduate Schools"

PAA 2015 Annual Meeting: Preliminary program and list of UM participants

ISR addition wins LEED Gold Certification

PSC Fall 2014 Newsletter now available

Next Brown Bag

Mon, April 6
Jinkook Lee, Wellbeing of the Elderly in East Asia

Causal thinking and complex system approaches in epidemiology

Publication Abstract

Galea, Sandro, M. Riddle, and George A. Kaplan. 2010. "Causal thinking and complex system approaches in epidemiology." International Journal of Epidemiology, 39(1): 97-106.

Identifying biological and behavioural causes of diseases has been one of the central concerns of epidemiology for the past half century. This has led to the development of increasingly sophisticated conceptual and analytical approaches focused on the isolation of single causes of disease states. However, the growing recognition that (i) factors at multiple levels, including biological, behavioural and group levels may influence health and disease, and (ii) that the interrelation among these factors often includes dynamic feedback and changes over time challenges this dominant epidemiological paradigm. Using obesity as an example, we discuss how the adoption of complex systems dynamic models allows us to take into account the causes of disease at multiple levels, reciprocal relations and interrelation between causes that characterize the causation of obesity. We also discuss some of the key difficulties that the discipline faces in incorporating these methods into non-infectious disease epidemiology. We conclude with a discussion of a potential way forward.

DOI:10.1093/ije/dyp296 (Full Text)

PMCID: PMC2912489. (Pub Med Central)

Country of focus: United States of America.

Browse | Search : All Pubs | Next