Member of the Month



Paul Hettler, Ph.D
California University of Pennsylvania (Department of Business and Economics)

PLYMOUTH, MA…October 1992, a young Paul Hettler attended his first IAES meeting to present his bachelor’s thesis paper. It was a great experience and he’s had a special affinity for the IAES ever since. Attending numerous conferences and eventually becoming a member of the Board of Editors for the International Advances in Economic Research. He is also the newest member of our Executive Committee! Paul remains quite busy at California University of Pennsylvania but in his free time he enjoys home improvement, travelling and photography.

What do you find most enjoyable about your involvement with the IAES?

I love the diversity of people and perspectives represented at the conferences.  It truly is ‘international’.  I also really enjoy the broad number of fields represented.  It is interesting to hear about the scholarship going on in area in which I am not a specialist. 

What types of projects/research are you working on and what inspires/motivates your field of study?

Currently I am interested in risk preference and risk perception in weather-related decisions (for example, whether to evacuate during a hurricane or tropical storm).  I am developing a survey instrument that can be used to measure risk preference in this decision making domain which will allow researchers to better understand the decision making process.  This in turn will inform the decisions made by the National Weather Service and others in terms of how to best communicate weather risk and other information.  The interdisciplinary nature of this research, and the potential for real world application, is what really sparked my interest.  It has been a great learning experience working with meteorologists and other social scientists on this project.

What advice would you give to someone who is considering entering your line of work or field of study?

I think it is very important for people to keep an open mind and be open to new directions for intellectual inquiry.  Too much of the academy is isolated into discipline-specific intellectual silos.  A whole new range of possibilities becomes available when we explore the complementarities across disciplines.

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