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Where do the conceptual models for behaviour change come from, and how are they used? A critical and constructive appraisal

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Doi: 10.20982/tqmp.16.1.p001

André, Nathalie , Laurencelle, Louis
Keywords: Epistemology; Conceptual models; Validity; Predictive validity; Human ethology; Discovery
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This essay aims to examine the nature of global conceptual models of human behaviour and their contribution to the advancement of scientific knowledge in the health and social sciences. Our perspective revisits the role that the researcher exerts in the face of theoretical models: should the researcher be an ambassador for a given model, or rather act as an independent examiner who challenges the model with his own ideas and methods, checks up its workings and strives to better understand behavioural processes? Is it the duty of the researcher to again exemplify the approximate descriptive pertinence of a well-known model? To the question: ''Do the global or generalist conceptual models facilitate or rather jeopardize the understanding of data and scientific progress?'' responses are given by focusing on the limitations of the methodologies intended to empirically validate global theoretical models and on the risk of ossifying the practice of research under the authority of consecrated paradigms. Alternative approaches are propounded to revalue strict ethological observation, introduce ad hoc instead of global models and explore definite hypotheses in current research.

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