From Public Health Science to Prevention Policy: Placing Science in Its Social and Political Contexts

ArticleinAmerican Journal of Public Health 87(10):1603-6 · November 1997with17 Reads
DOI: 10.2105/AJPH.87.10.1603 · Source: PubMed
    • "To overcome the above mentioned disconnections, faceto-face encounters consistently emerge as the most efficient way to transfer knowledge, achieve higher quality and acknowledge mutual dependence [94,113,115,116]. Personal relations provide gateways to the knowledge available in other niches and may result in affective ties that subsequently can reduce status differences. "
    [Show abstract] [Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Public health includes policy, practice and research but to sufficiently connect academic research, practice and public health policy appears to be difficult. Collaboration between policy, practice and research is imperative to obtaining more solid evidence in public health. However, the three domains do not easily work together because they emanate from three more or less independent 'niches'.Work cycles of each niche have the same successive steps: problem recognition, approach formulation, implementation, and evaluation, but are differently worked out. So far, the research has focused on agenda-setting which belongs to the first step, as expressed by Kingdon, and on the use of academic knowledge in policy makers' decision-making processes which belongs to the fourth step, as elaborated by Weiss. In addition, there are more steps in the policy-making process where exchange is needed. A qualitative descriptive research was conducted by literature search. We analyzed the four steps of the policy, practice and research work cycles. Next, we interpreted the main conflicting aspects as disconnections for each step. There are some conspicuous differences that strengthen the niche character of each domain and hamper integration and collaboration. Disconnections ranged from formulating priorities in problem statements to power roles, appraisal of evidence, work attitudes, work pace, transparency of goals, evaluation and continuation strategies and public accountability. Creating awareness of these disconnections may result in more compatibility between researchers, policy makers and practitioners. We provide an analysis that can be used by public health services-related researchers, practitioners and policy makers to be aware of the risk for disconnections. A synthesis of the social, practical and scientific relevance of public health problems should be the starting point for a dialogue that seeks to establish a joint approach. To overcome the above mentioned disconnections, face-to-face encounters consistently emerge as the most efficient way to transfer knowledge, achieve higher quality and acknowledge mutual dependence. We recommend practice and policy based research networks to establish strong links between researchers, policy makers and practitioners to improve public health.
    Full-text · Article · Dec 2010
    • "Understanding the interface between scientific research and policy action is a complex and multifaceted undertaking. Prevention policies designed to protect public health usually involve the knowledge base, political will to act, and social strategy to accomplish change [43]. Undoubtedly the knowledge base plays a critical role in stimulating and supporting preventive actions to protect public health. "
    [Show abstract] [Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: THIS PAPER HAS TWO AIMS: (1) to summarize various geographic information science methods; and (2) to provide a review of studies that have employed such methods. Though not meant to be a comprehensive review, this paper explains when certain methods are useful in epidemiological studies and also serves as an overview of the growing field of spatial epidemiology.
    Full-text · Article · Apr 2010
    • "Consistent with the Healthy People 2010 vision that " health improvement begins at home, in schools, in worksites, and in the community, " the Healthy Carolinians social strategy relies on " local activities that promote a healthier environment and lifestyle " (U.S. Department of Health and Human Services 1998; Atwood 1997). Social strategies vary by partnership, and are tied to an action plan designed to address a partnership's priority areas. "
    [Show abstract] [Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Healthy People 2010 identified eliminating health disparities as one of two overarching goals for the U.S., along with increasing quality and years of healthy life. This report examines North Carolina and Washington, two states that are making notable use of data to address disparities. Washington’s initiative is in the early stages, while North Carolina’s has existed since the early 1990s. Case studies in this report illustrate how data are being used to identify health disparities and develop initiatives to eliminate them.
    Full-text · Article · Jan 2008 · International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health
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