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We run a series of projects focusing on decision processes of different actors in organisations that directly or indirectly deal with health of individuals or the population.

Conceptualising how selected multi-ethnic groups of Malaysia with different tolerance levels perceive and respond to uncertainty in oral health decisions

Our PhD student – Dr Prashanti Eachempati is working on better understanding selected ethnic groups of Malaysia, with different tolerance levels, perceive and respond to uncertainty regarding oral health decisions in a dental care environment. She also aims to explore if the perceived uncertainty has an impact on their decision making and the factors, they are willing to trade off to change their decisions. 
Eachempati P, Büchter RB, Ks KK, Hanks S, Martin J, Nasser M. Developing an integrated multilevel model of uncertainty in health care: a qualitative systematic review and thematic synthesis. BMJ Glob Health. 2022 May;7(5):e008113. doi: 10.1136/bmjgh-2021-008113. PMID: 35501069; PMCID: PMC9062775.

NGO decision making during complex disasters an ecological approach

Pamela Cajilig - Curiosity Design Research
Mona Nasser - University of Plymouth
Decision-making for disaster management is particularly challenging given the urgency, stakes, and range of actors involved. Earlier studies of decision-making are dominated by positivist approaches in which models reify decisions as discrete objects and assume that decisions are made by “rational” and socio-environmentally disengaged individuals (Boholm et al., 2013; Cajilig et al., 2020). Meanwhile, there has been increasing interest in participatory approaches to decision-making for disaster management as evinced by domestic and international policy frameworks such as the Grand Bargain of the 2016 World Humanitarian Summit, the Sendai Framework, and the Philippine Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Act of 2010. However, current notions of participation remain largely anthropocentric; these still do not consider the breadth of agents, humans and non-humans, that shape decision making processes. In this study, we build upon the work of those who underscore the relationality of decision-making. This proposed qualitative and ecological approach to studying decision-making apprehends decisions made within non-governmental organizations (NGOs), key actors in Philippine disaster management and development, in terms of how their effects reveal the interconnectedness of the social, political, material, affective, and environmental dimensions of disaster. This study will thus provide insight into operationalizing complexity within disaster contexts; it also highlights the ways of knowing that are essential to response-ability, the capacity to respond, within a fragile and virulent world (Barad, 2007).

The project is supported by Brown University, Centre for human Rights and Humanitarian studies (NGO Decision-Making During Complex Disasters: An Ecological Approach | Center for Human Rights and Humanitarian Studies (

Developing a Practical Restorative Dental Risk Score: Using meta-prognosis to improve holistic patient care

Our PhD student Mark Steven-Howe is working on developing a novel, practical, objective, evidence-based tool for assessing restorative clinical risk, mainly for primary care dental settings and improving interprofessional communication.
dental check
Dentist surgery - image courtesy of Shutterstock

Impact of anxiety on dentists’ decision making

In a priority setting exercise, primary care dentists prioritised a research question on potential impact of stress and anxiety on dentist’s decision making. In a review on the topic Evidence summary: does dentists' fear have an adverse effect on clinical decision-making? | British Dental Journal (, there was no evidence found to answer the question. One of our NIHR Academic Clinical Fellows (Anastasios Plessas) ran a research project in response under the supervision of Professor Mona Nasser, Professor Yaniv Hanoch and Professor David Moles to address the research gap. The project focused on time pressure as a stress factor and diagnostic process as the decision making process. Further information available at: Role of time pressure on dentists’ diagnostic decision making - University of Plymouth.