Expert workshops

01-02/Oct/2013 - Chatou, France
Consultation workshop on expert elicitation

To assess how human and environmental exposure assessments can benefit from each other, the HEROIC Consortium organized an expert workshop in Chatou, France, on October 1-2, 2013 to analyse expert decision rules and to identify recommendations for improving the robustness of WoE approaches in decision making processes. The general objective was to test integration frameworks based on concrete case studies for early Proof of Consistency (PoC).

Evaluating how human and environmental risk assessors cross-evaluate and integrate toxicological data to come to a decision is an important element to illustrate how, where and why human and environmental RAs are done differently to identify the main drivers in integration and decision-making. As part of Work Package (WP) 4 ‘Integrated decision-making framework for the future’, the objective of the expert consultation was to analyze the level of agreement and disagreement between experts on decision processes, and to identify the main drivers for deviations in expert decision, based on two selected case studies (skin sensitization and endocrine disruption).

Case studies were used to make explicit these inter-expert subjective choices and value-laden assumptions that significantly contribute to the uncertainty of the final decision. Uncertainty is then reflected by the degree of disagreement between experts at each level of the process (relevance, individual strength of evidence, integrated strength of evidence) as well as missing information in the form of truncated datasets. The workshop featured two breakout group sessions which provided in depth discussions  about decision rules followed by experts for data integration, based on how they weighted different lines of evidence such as non-test data, in vitro tests, in vivo tests on wildlife, in vivo tests on mammalians.
As a follow up to the workshop recommendations for a more transparent, structured and robust framework to integrate various sources of information for hazard and risk assessment will be drafted.
All participants are grateful to P. Ciffroy for the hospitality and organisation of the meeting.