Public Health Communication Evidence for Behavior Change
This volume argues the case that public health communication has affected health behavior. It brings together 16 studies of large-scale communication in a variety of substantive health areas--tobacco, drugs, AIDS, family planning, heart disease, childhood disease, highway safety--prepared by the authors who did the original research. These studies show important effects and illustrate the central conditions for success. The book also includes complementary analytic chapters which provide a meta-analysis of published results, some approaches to developing communication interventions, and alternative methods for evaluation of public health communication projects.
Including studies based on communication programs in the United States, as well as projects done elsewhere in the world, including Europe, Africa, Asia and Latin America, this book:
*offers a broad presentation of the alternative research designs that have been used to evaluate public health communication programs;
*includes a great range of approaches from field experiments and natural experiments to simple before-after and complex time series designs, using data gathered from individuals and from archives; and
*utilizes an innovative perspective on how to exercise public health communication from a leading and thoughtful practitioner.
As such, it is required reading for scholars, students, practitioners, and policymakers in public health, health communication, health psychology, and related areas.
"This is a first-rate volume that should be read--and then put on the bookshelves--of every reader of this journal and everyone involved in social marketing. It features strong theory and careful science for scholars....Robert Hornik...has done us all a great service by carefully pulling together what we know about the effects of public health communications on behavior....He has assembled in one place a great deal of evidence about the efficacy of one rival/complementary approach. He has also provided a compelling narrative about why and when public health communications actually work. Finally, he has offered research guidelines for those who seek to support their own arsenal of interventions. I can only hope that in ten year's time, one of us can edit a similarly praiseworthy volume, perhaps with the title Social Marketing: Evidence for Behavior Change."
—Social Marketing Quarterly
"...the book provides complementary analytic chapters with a meta-analysis of published results, some approaches to developing communication interventions, and alternative methods for evaluation of public health communication projects."
—International Journal of Public Opinion Research
"...the book's excellent organization and comprehensiveness, make it a distinct and authoritative contribution to the fields of public health communication, health promotion, and behavior change."
—Journal of Community Health
"...this exceptionally well-written volume serves several purposes. Perhaps most importantly, it provides strong evidence that public communication campaigns can be potent influences on health behavior changes, across a variety of changer indicators. Second, the book is a terrific methodological read for those with and without deep understanding of the statistical bases of most advanced designs, carefully comparing the advantages and pitfalls of a variety of methods. Researchers with interest in evaluation per se, regardless of subject area, will benefit from this presentation. Third, the volume is as detailed and as thoughtful an overview of current work in public health programs literature as may be available at this writing."
—Public Opinion Quarterly
"...the book serves as a useful supplement for addressing challenges associated with the evaluation of campaigns. Public Health Communication is a must-read for graduate students, researchers, evaluators, and policy makers because it identifies the complex reality in which communication compaigns function....The continued funding of public communication campaigns rests on the ability of stakeholders to demonstrate the effectiveness of campaigns--and Public Health Communication bolsters stakeholders' ability to supply evidence for that purpose."
—Journal of Health Communication