Creative Thinking in Epidemiology: 5. Alternatives to some statistical conventions & 6. Agent-oriented epidemiology

5.  Alternatives to some statistical conventions: As I have developed my ability to read the epidemiological literature and explain the methods and controversies over methods to others, I have taken note of approaches or perspectives that depart from statistical conventions.  The third Appendix includes some items from my mixed grab bag of alternatives.  There is no grand theory linking them.  Readers might have objections to some of the alternatives and the thinking behind them, but they might also be stimulated to explore their implications further.  It does not matter if you end up sticking with the conventional approaches; the alternatives are offered here in the spirit of critical thinking, namely, that we understand ideas better by holding them in tension with alternatives.


  • What conventions of statistical practice frustrate you and what alternatives have you considered?


6.  Agent-oriented epidemiology:  A further widening of the range of agents building knowledge about epidemiology and population health.  See


  • What variants of what I call an agent-oriented focus are already evident in your own areas of research and policy?

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