Identifying how and why some people excel in helping teams solve problems
Most jobs require teamwork, and the labor market increasingly rewards "team players" - i.e. people who make large, positive contributions to group success. Our research pioneers a new method for identifying team players, by randomly assigning people to multiple groups, and observing how well the groups solve problems. Which individuals tend to be in groups that are more than the sum of their parts? And what are the behaviours and communication strategies used by team players?
Currently we're replicating our initial experiment and refining our measurement module so that it can be made available to other researchers. We're also exploring whether we are able to identify people who are particularly skilled at: i) leading teams, and ii) working in diverse teams.
Exploring the growing role of decision making in economic decisions
Machines increasingly replace people in routine job tasks. The remaining tasks often require workers to make decision in uncertain environments. Our research focuses measuring decision making skill, with a particular emphasis on economically important decisions: for example, the decision managers make when they assign members of their team to different tasks.
We are currently building and validating two, performance-based tools:
i) the Assignment Game. This is a short, theoretically-grounded instrument for large-scale research
ii) the Management Game. This is a simulation tool to measure the way in which managers allocate their own attention and the attention of others
This work is a part of a collaboration with Andrew Caplin and Søren Leth-Petersen.