On Time Banking In Ithaca, New York

I love this article. One place I've seen time banking mentioned a lot (although as far as I know it isn't widely implemented) is among caregivers- I think the idea is that you bank time doing caregiving work for sick or elderly people when you're able-bodied enough to do it, and then withdraw from you banked time when you need the help yourself.

Posted on September 19, 2014 at 11:27 am 1

On Say Yes to Paying for the Dress

LW here! Thanks for the Real Talk, everybody. I emailed customer service and am waiting to hear back, so hopefully my karma points remain intact. Most of them, anyway.

Posted on November 6, 2013 at 4:51 pm 4

On Things to Think About Before Pursuing Grad School

@apples and oranges I think it's very geography-dependent. I work in Boston, and here (I guess because it's such a research hub and there are so very, very many people with advanced degrees), an MPH in epi/biostats pretty much qualifies you to work as a data analyst or research coordinator. I decided to go on to get the PhD because I really wanted to do original research, not just analyze other scientists' data. But it took me a couple of years working as a data analyst to figure that out, and I'm really happy that I did the MPH and then worked, rather than jumping straight into a PhD program. As far as social research goes, I know lots of people (including me) working with MPH degrees in psychology and psychiatry. My experience (and that of friends in similar tracks) is that it's having statistical and programming skills/knowledge that will get you hired into a research job.

Posted on January 8, 2013 at 1:19 pm 0

On Things to Think About Before Pursuing Grad School

@apples and oranges Yep! I got my MPH in epidemiology in 2009, worked for a couple of years, and am now back in school to get a PhD. Ask away, I'd love to help :)

Posted on January 8, 2013 at 11:17 am 0

On The Independent Bookstore is Not Dead

@Lily Rowan I love Rodney's! I've gotten some of my best weird books there ("Oral Sadism and the Vegetarian Personality"; "A Random Walk Through Fractal Dimensions").

Posted on November 29, 2012 at 6:29 pm 0

On The Independent Bookstore is Not Dead

@Lily Rowan I should maybe add that Lorem Ipsum is a used bookstore, which is probably its own category. Mostly I thought that the way the store owner tried to approach his business model in different ways- internet pricing, for example- was interesting. Also it's my local bookstore, so I'm sorry to see it go.

Posted on November 29, 2012 at 4:20 pm 0

On The Independent Bookstore is Not Dead

Ooooh, relevant: http://www.boston.com/business/technology/innoeco/2012/11/cambridge_bookstore_founded_as.html

Posted on November 29, 2012 at 2:43 pm 0

On Paying 4 Performance

@stuffisthings There's a really great paper by Serumaga, I think in BMJ, that looks at the effect of P4P in UK primary care practices and essentially found no association, either in processes or outcomes. Lots of possible explanations beyond "P4P doesn't work" (the paper discusses a couple of them), but I don't think there's much in the way of convincing research showing the P4P benefits anyone but the payors. Something I don't think Ariely mentioned was the impact of negative incentives in a P4P setup. Also- and I don't have a citation for this- I believe the kind of gaming we're both talking about is just less problematic in the UK, since insurance isn't tied to employment, and medicine just flat-out isn't as profitable. What do you think?

Posted on November 15, 2012 at 4:09 pm 0

On Paying 4 Performance

@stuffisthings Paying for outcomes is great in theory, but difficult in practice, since outcomes are often pretty distant from treatment (for example, statin treatment and coronary heart disease), and people move in and out of hospitals, regions, and practices. I think most propoponents of P4P agree that rewarding outcomes would probably be preferable. The other problem, of course, is that rewarding outcomes can encourage gaming the system, i.e., doctors or practices selecting healthier patients. I'm so embarrassed that I've been lurking around the Billfold for months, and it takes a health policy post to make me comment.

Posted on November 15, 2012 at 3:04 pm 0