Robert J. Volk, PhD

Profile picture of Robert J. Volk, PhD

Task Group Chair

University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center

Robert J. Volk, PhD, is a decision scientist and Professor in the Department of Health Services Research at the University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center in Houston, Texas. His research focus is shared decision making, a process wherein patients and their health care providers jointly making difficult clinical decisions when the optimal strategy is uncertain. Dr. Volk is head of the Decision Support Lab and the Shared Decision Making Collaborative at MD Anderson, where he was named the 2012 Outstanding Patient Educator, received a President’s Recognition for Faculty Excellence award in 2016, and a President’s Recognition for Faculty Excellence in Education and Mentorship Advancement award in 2017. His patient decision aids have received two Telly Awards and platinum and Gold Hermes Creative Awards for best film and video production in the area of health care. He is a member of the Steering Committee for the International Patient Decision Aid Standards (IPDAS) Collaboration, which recently published a series of standards for developers and users of patient decision aids. His research in patient decision support has been funded by the National Cancer Institute, the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality (AHRQ), Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, the Patient-Centered Outcomes Research Institute (PCORI), and other non-federal sources. Dr. Volk’s recent PCORI funding focuses on promotion of informed decisions about lung cancer screening with low-dose computed tomography. Dr. Volk also served as co-principal investigator of the John M. Eisenberg Center for Clinical Decisions and Communications Science, an AHRQ-funded center for translation of complex scientific information into materials for consumers, clinicians and policymakers.