Brian Zikmund-Fisher, PhD

Brian J. Zikmund-Fisher is an Assistant Professor in the Department of Health Behavior and Health Education, University of Michigan School of Public Health, as well as a Research Assistant Professor in the Division of General Internal Medicine, University of Michigan Medical School. 

Dr. Zikmund-Fisher uses his interdisciplinary background in decision psychology and behavioral economics to study factors that affect individual decision making about a variety of health and medical issues, with a particular emphasis on health and environmental risk perceptions and the effects of poor numeracy (people's ability to interpret quantitative information) on health and medical decision making. His research in health communications focuses on making risk statistics and other types of quantitative health information meaningful and useful for decision making by patients and the public. He was the Principal Investigator of the National Institute for Environmental Health Sciences (NIEHS)-funded Community Perceptions of Dioxins (CPOD) Study and co-led the National Survey of Medical Decisions (the DECISIONS study) project.  Dr. Zikmund-Fisher directs the Internet Survey Lab at the UM Center for Bioethics and Social Sciences in Medicine (CBSSM), is a core faculty member of the UM Risk Science Center (UM-RSC) and the UM Health Informatics program, and is affiliated with the UM Center for Health Communications Research (UM-CHCR) and the Ann Arbor VAMC HSR&D Center for Clinical Management Research. He also serves as an Associate Editor for the journal Medical Decision Making.

Recent Publications:

Helping patients decide: Ten steps to better risk communication
Fagerlin A, Zikmund-Fisher BJ, Ubel P. Journal of the National Cancer Institute 2011;103(19):.

Increased precision in online risk calculators doesn't help and might hurt
Witteman H, Zikmund-Fisher BJ, Waters EA, Gavaruzzi T, Fagerlin A. Journal of Medical Internet Research 2011;13(3):e54.

Recent Press Coverage:

Decision guide reduced uncertainty over breast cancer prevention, study finds
University of Michigan Health System Press Release - April 16, 2012

10 ways to make better decisions about cancer care
University of Michigan Health System Press Release - September 20, 2011