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SIOP HomeProsocial I-O → Ron Piccolo

SIOP Spotlight on Pro-social and Advocacy Work: Ron Piccolo

Ron Piccolo is a SIOP member who serves on the Boards of Directors for the Heart of Florida United Way, the Central Florida YMCA, and the Foundation for Foster Care. He is past Board member of Habitat for Humanity, on the advisory board for the BETA Center, and on Orange County’s (Florida) committees on homelessness and youth mental health. Ron is a professor at the University of Central Florida as Galloway Professor of Management. He serves on the editorial boards for the Academy of Management Journal and Leadership Quarterly, is associate editor of Organizational Dynamics, and publishes in top Industrial/Organizational psychology journals.

We asked Ron to tell us a little bit about his prosocial and advocacy work. As an example of his prosocial work, Dr. Piccolo has been directly involved in the development and execution of the United Way’s “Investing in Results” initiative, which seeks to improve the utility of philanthropic grants and the quality of social service agencies by periodically and systematically evaluating the efficacy of programs and the efficiency of the agencies that deliver those programs.

In one example, a cabinet of experts on Healthy Children and Families examined health needs in the local community and sought to align resources with the region’s most pressing concerns, such as the healthy birth weight of newborns.

Why this particular focus?

Because there is a great deal of evidence that links birth weight to cognitive and emotional development, that in turn may impact attendance at school, teenage behavior, graduation rates, and lifelong costs to the social system. So, Dr. Piccolo and others evaluate the efficacy of proposed interventions based on grant applications from program providers that detail what outcomes can be achieved. Research methods in Industrial/Organizational psychology, such as reliable measurement, predictive validity, and multi-level modeling, are integral parts of this evaluation process.

Dr. Piccolo’s I/O expertise helps him:

  • Judge whether programs are actually measuring what they think they are measuring,
  • Evaluate evidence that links intervention and outcomes
  • Filter out programs without good logic, good measurement, and good outcomes.

More details about the United Way Investing Results program can be found here: