Behavioural science needs a data-led fusion, says to Deakin University Associate Professor

Behavioural science needs a greater focus on the data that derives from it, giving organisations and clients a better chance at enabling powerful conversations, a Deakin University professor has claimed.

Johann Ponnampalam at MSIX

Johann Ponnampalam, co-founder of Decision Design and Associate Professor at Deakin University, explained at the Marketing Ideas Science Xchange conference the importance of leading with data.

“We have to lead with data, we can’t be heroic in thinking this is a go-at-it alone capability, we have to use the best of predictive analytics to find out who we need to train our behaviour change effort from for maximum social and commercial impact,” he said.

“We have to consume the real science, not the entertainment, which means practitioners can consume the real science but clients now have a series of questions they can ask the practitioners – has this replicated, is it generalisable?”

Ponnampalam also explained the need to account for heterogeneity within behavioural data, making sure analysts and companies always account for individual differences.

“We have to account for heterogeneity, we need to account for individual differences,” he said.


Chapman: “It’s enabling the next best and most powerful conversation”

The Associate Professor concluded his session, titled ‘What’s Possible at the Intersection of Behavioural Science, Analytics and Creativity’, by saying “we fuse behavioural science with data science and bring it to life with creativity.”

Andrew Chapman, co-founder of Decision Design, followed his colleague by explaining that the missing piece of data science is ‘the how’ – the behavioural element to the data.

Behavioural triggers that are flagged through behavioural science findings are at the core of creating powerful conversations, said Chapman.

“There are business rules against direct behavioural triggers flagged at an individual customer level, those can be directly targeted, they can be executed against,” he said.

“It’s enabling the next best and most powerful conversation.”


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