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Applying Social Psychology


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Table of Contents

About the Authors Preface How to Use this Text Introduction and Background 1 APPLYING SOCIAL PSYCHOLOGY Example of the Application of Social Psychological Theories Other Relevant Decisions Applying Social Psychology: The PATH from Problem to Intervention Problems with Applying Theories Conclusion 2 THE PROBLEM PHASE: FROM A PROBLEM TO A PROBLEM DEFINITION Introduction Key Questions for Problem Definition Research for a Problem Definition Completing the Problem Definition 3 THE ANALYSIS PHASE: FINDING THEORY-BASED EXPLANATIONS FOR PROBLEMS Introduction Specifying the Outcome Variable Requirements for the Outcome Variable The Divergent Phase: Generating Explanations Theoretical Approaches Under Investigation: The Case of Safe Sex Promotion The Convergent Phase: Reducing the Number of Explanations 4 THE TEST PHASE: DEVELOPING AND TESTING THE PROCESS MODEL Introduction Formulating a Process Model Heuristics for Developing a Process Model Testing the Process Model Doing Your Own Research 5 THE HELP PHASE: DEVELOPING THE INTERVENTION Introduction Preparing Intervention Development Developing the Intervention Building the Intervention Programme Implementation of the Intervention CONCLUSION: LOOKING BACKWARD AND FORWARD Glossary Bibliography Index

About the Author

Abraham (Bram) P. Buunk has been an Academy Professor in Evolutionary Social Psychology at the University of Groningen, on behalf of the Royal Netherlands Academy of Arts and Sciences, since 2005. His main current interest is the application of evolutionary theorizing to human social behaviour. He has published widely on applied topics, including professional burnout, jealousy, absenteeism, AIDS-prevention, loneliness, depression, marital satisfaction, well-being among the elderly, and coping with cancer. He is co-editor of Health, coping and well-being: Perspectives from social comparison theory (Erlbaum, 1997), and Solidarity and Prosocial Behaviour (Springer, 2006). He has served on scientific boards for the Dutch Cancer Foundation (NKB-KWF), and the Dutch AIDS Foundation. He was a member of the Programme Committee on Evolution and Behaviour of the Netherlands Organization for Scientific Research (NWO). Currently Bram Buunk is conducting research in Latin America on various applied psychology themes. Mark Van Vugt is Professor of Social and Organizational Psychology at VU University, the Netherlands, and he holds honorary positions at the University of Oxford and the University of Kent, United Kingdom. He started his academic studies in Psychology in the Netherlands and he worked at various universities in the UK before returning to his birth town Amsterdam to take on a professorship in Psychology. He has published over 100 articles in outlets such as Nature, Psychological Science, and the American Psychologist on various topics in social, organizational and evolutionary psychology, including leadership and management, altruism and cooperation, social identity and intergroup conflict, sex differences, transport and environmental sustainability. He is a former Associate Editor of Journal of Personality and Social Psychology and co-author of several books, including a trade book on leadership, titled "Selected"(Profile/Harper, 2010) . Mark Van Vugt is a fellow of the Royal Academy of Arts in London and blogs on Psychology Today.


'This 2nd edition by Buunk and Van Vugt is a major contribution to understanding the role of Applied Social Psychology's relevance in dealing with societal problems. It is coherently written and inspiring to students clearly demonstrating the application of psychological theories and knowledge to a variety of everyday problems. For Practitioners the PATH model is a must have "tool" in their armoury, it reflects competency in the field, ensuring a structured approach to a theoretical and empirically-based intervention plan. Highly recommended.' -- Dr Carmen-Maria Fyfe
Recognising the need for practical examples and illustration to convey the step-by-step approach, each chapter is enhanced with a number of interesting features. Interviews with prominent applied social psychologists, such as Gerjo Kok, will provide a welcome respite to students who may struggle with the sometimes dense and detailed description of the phases. Case studies are used to illustrate practical examples of each phase in action. There are also engaging practical activities, which an instructor could adapt for use in the classroom. -- Emma L. Davies

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