Spring 2024
IACM Resource: Ombudsperson Natalie Landau Gibson

Greetings IACM community,

Natalie Landau Gibson is an Ombudsperson for the General Campus at the University of California, Los Angeles, and serves as IACM’s Ombudsperson. Ombudspeople serve as independent, confidential resources for individuals within an organization to discuss concerns, complaints, or conflicts. They provide a safe place for confidential communication without fear of retaliation or judgment.
With a particular interest in cross-cultural and interpersonal experiences, she enjoys working with people in conflict to create positive outcomes. Natalie graduated with honors from Boston University with a BA in Socio-Cultural Anthropology, and from The American University School of International Service with an MA in Ethics, Peace, and Global Affairs, with concentrations in Human Rights, Social Justice, Conflict Transformation & Peacebuilding. Before joining the Office of Ombuds Services at UCLA, Natalie worked as a Junior Associate Ombudsman in the Office of the Ombudsman at the United States Department of State in Washington, D.C. She is a member of the International Ombudsman Association (IOA). She has professional certificates in Conflict Coaching and Diversity & Inclusion.
Natalie can be reached year-round at ombuds@iafcm.org and will also be available at the Singapore conference as a resource. Please click here to learn more about our Rules and Expectations for Professional Conduct.

If you missed our IACM VSS featuring Natalie prior to IACM 2023, you can view that session below.

Member Highlight: Andras Molnar
Recipient of the 2023 IACM / iDG Technology Award
by Sarah Jensen, University of Utah
Andras Molnar was the recipient of the 2023 IACM / iDecisionGames Technology Award for his submission of SMARTRIQS. The IACM / iDG Technology Award is an annual award honoring a scholar who has made innovative use of technology in research, teaching, or practice in the area of negotiation and conflict management

About Dr. Andras Molnar

Dr. Andras Molnar is an Assistant Professor of Psychology at the University of Michigan. He earned his PhD from Carnegie Mellon University and completed his post-doctoral training in the Center for Decision Research at the University of Chicago Booth School of Business. Dr. Molnar studies belief-based utility across a range of contexts, trying to understand why people hold, and expect others to hold, certain beliefs that don’t necessarily lead to better decision making.

In simple terms, SMARTRIQS (rhymes with Qualtrics) is a free, innovative, open-source platform that allows researchers to collect real-time data on interactions between participants. It operates with Qualtrics, so it doesn’t require researchers to learn any new survey design software. SMARTRIQS is a game-changer in the world of social interaction research because it allows researchers without extensive computer programming knowledge to create surveys within minutes. It also provides a way to avoid using deception and improves research credibility among participants.
What was the inspiration behind SMARTRIQS?

As a PhD student, Andras faced a problem not unfamiliar to graduate students studying human behavior: recruiting participants for social interaction studies. While platforms like Amazon Mechanical Turk and Prolific existed in the research world, they couldn’t capture the one thing Andras needed, real-time social interaction. After searching extensively, Andras realized that no such tool existed, or at least not one that didn’t require making a large purchase (rarely possible on a graduate student budget) or having extensive programming knowledge. So, Andras decided to create his own tool, and SMARTRIQS was born. At first, Andras used the software for just one study, but after realizing its potential, he spent two years building it out into the product we see today.
What tips and tricks should researchers know about when using SMARTRIQS? 

Even though the website lists mostly classic behavioral economics games (e.g., dictator game, trust game, public goods game), SMARTRIQS can be used to run a variety of studies ranging from negotiation to revenge and forgiveness.

Participant configuration can take many forms. Participants can interact if the study is launched through a platform such as Prolific, but it is also possible to use SMARTRIQS while recruiting participants in the same or a proximal physical location (e.g., lab settings).
SMARTRIQS is IRB friendly! Since no identifiable participant information is stored on the main server, getting IRB approval to use this technology should be straightforward. If a researcher did want to collect identifiable information in their study, they would just need to run SMARTRIQS on their own server and get that procedure approved by their IRB. 
It’s a good idea to offer a bit more compensation for these studies to minimize attrition. By default, if a participant drops out of a group, the data from that group becomes a loss; however, researchers can change this default by, for example, letting the group finish the study without that group member.
If you could improve SMARTRIQS in any way, what would you do?

The cool thing about SMARTRIQS is that it’s free and open source which means that people can update it and add to it. Andras said that one thing that would be great is to figure out how to use it for large group interactions (e.g., 40+ people). If someone could figure that out, SMARTRIQS could be used in experiments looking at voting behavior or large-scale ingroup/outgroup differences. Another possibility that excites him is using generative AI with SMARTRIQS. He can imagine participants being able to interact with AI within a survey and using AI on the back end of the survey to create new study templates.
How do people get started? 

Head to the website (https://smartriqs.com/) and check out the demos. This will allow you to get a feel for what participants will see when they take your studies. After that, head to the “get started” page to start building your own survey! If you’re interested in more advanced applications of SMARTRIQS, head to the “Publications” tab and read the 2019 paper.
Do you have any tips for future applicants of this award? 

Andras shared that he thinks simplicity is the key. The product doesn’t need to be the most elegantly designed as long as it works and is able to provide a practical solution for a problem in conflict research. 
Bios of New Board Members
Nicholas Hays, Michigan State University
Jennifer Dannals, Yale University
Nicholas Hays (he/him) is an Associate Professor of Management at Michigan State University's Broad College of Business. He received his Ph.D. in Organizational Behavior from UCLA, and his B.A. in Psychology and B.S. in Economics from the University of Pennsylvania. His research examines the psychology of hierarchy, specifically how power and status hierarchies, the most prevalent forms of social hierarchy, affect individuals' experiences and group processes. His research has been published in journals such as Academy of Management Journal, Administrative Science Quarterly, Organization Science, Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, Journal of Applied Psychology, Journal of Experimental Social Psychology, and Organizational Behavior and Human Decision Processes. Prior to MSU, Dr. Hays was a Visiting Assistant Professor at NYU's Stern School of Business. Before his academic career, Dr. Hays worked in management consulting for Booz & Company in New York and Bridge Strategy Group in Chicago.

Jennifer (Jen) Dannals (she/her) is an Assistant Professor of Organizational Behavior at the Yale School of Management. She received her Ph.D. from Stanford's Graduate School of Business in Organizational Behavior and her A.B. in Psychology from Princeton University. Prior to her position at Yale, she was an Assistant Professor in Strategy and Management at the Tuck School of Business at Dartmouth College. Jen studies how people perceive groups and teams and how groups and teams interact. In her main research stream, she explores how individuals perceive group behavior and group norms. Her research has been published in journals such as Journal of Applied Psychology, Journal of Experimental Psychology: General, Journal of Experimental Social Psychology, Organizational Behavior and Human Decision Processes, Organization Science, Personality and Social Psychology Bulletin, and Perspectives in Psychological Sciences.
IACM 2023-2024 Capital Campaign Raises $30,000

In celebrating the many accomplishments of our association, IACM conducted a 2023-2024 Capital Campaign to establish an Endowment Fund. This campaign aimed to secure the future success of conflict management scholars by hosting a doctoral workshop annually, supporting graduate student travel, and fostering the professional development of young scholars. Historically, IACM has depended on external funding for these activities, and such funds are limited. Thanks to the generous support of our donors, we raised over $30,000 to support future doctoral workshops and the scholarship of graduate students and young academics studying conflict management. This effort not only fosters research excellence among the next generation of scholars but also promotes long-term giving to the Association. If you would like more information, please click here

Join Us at IACM 2024 at INSEAD in Singapore
June 23 - 26, 2024
IACM 2024 will be hosted in Singapore from June 23-26 at INSEAD. Acceptances were sent out in March, and more details regarding the sessions will be coming soon. Not only will we have our regular symposia and poster presentations, but we will also have quick-fire blitz talks, novel teaching sessions, and roundtables. You may register here, and information on costs, accommodation, and refund policies are here. We hope to see you there!

IACM 2025 at the University of Vermont, USA
July 13 - 16, 2025

IACM 2025 will take place on the campus of the University of Vermont in Burlington, VT from July 13-16. The university is located on the banks of the pristine Lake Champlain. The conference will be hosted by the university, meaning that conference-sponsored housing will be in the university dormitories (private or shared rooms with semi-private, Jack and Jill style bathrooms will be available). We are excited to try out this campus model as it facilitates significantly lower costs. We will also make hotel recommendations available for accommodations in charming, downtown Burlington, adjacent to campus. In fact, IACM started with this on-campus model, so by trying the campus model in 2025, we’re going back to our roots as an organization!

Share Your Success With Us!

Congratulations, Donna Shestowsky (Martin Luther King Jr. Professor of Law and Director of the Lawyering Skills Education Program at the University of California, Davis), for receiving the Scholar Award in Fall 2023 from the Litigation Section of the Association of American Law Schools!

SiGNAL Newsletter Editor
Dejun "Tony" Kong, University of Colorado Boulder

Dejun “Tony” Kong, Ph.D.
Fellow, Association for Psychological Science
Associate Editor, Journal of Management
Associate Editor, Journal of Organizational Behavior
Associate Professor of Organizational Leadership and Information Analytics
Leeds School of Business
University of Colorado Boulder, USA

SiGNAL Newsletter Assistant Editor
Sarah Jensen, University of Utah

Sarah Jensen
Ph.D. Candidate
Management & Organizational Behavior
David Eccles School of Business
University of Utah, USA

A special thanks to Dejun "Tony" Kong and Sarah Jensen for their efforts to edit the SiGNAL Newsletter. Don't forget that we have our SiGNAL Archive at iafcm.org where you can find our newsletter dating back to 1986!

Questions or Comments? Please contact IACM Executive Director Brandon Charpied.

Brandon Charpied
IACM Executive Director
+1 (843) 855-0301 (Cell/Text/WhatsApp)
International Association for Conflict Management