Background, aim and research questions
The scientific evidence of physical activity (PA) promoting health and preventing diseases has led to both national and international reports and guidelines, however much of the research based knowledge is still not integrated fully into policy making. This project aims to fill in the gap of knowledge on how research is being used as evidence in PA policy making and the factors influencing the use of research.
The aim of this project is:
- To study the use and role of research in physical activity policy making, and
- to identify organizational and other factors influencing the use of research in physical activity policy making.
The project examines the following research questions, which will lead into four scientific, international peer-reviewed articles.
Research question 1:
How explicit is research used in the development of 25 selected PA policies from Europe and Canada?
Research question 2:
How is research being used as evidence compared to other kinds of knowledge in three cases of local level physical activity policy making in Denmark?
Research question 3:
Which organizational factors have been identified as important in published studies in effectively integrating research into physical activity policy making?
Research question 4:
Which organizational and other factors influence the use of research as evidence for three cases of local level physical activity policy making in Denmark?
Comparative case study policy analyses are being conducted, where policy documents from 25 selected cases of PA policymaking and interviews with key stakeholders from three Danish policy cases have been collected for analysis. In addition to the analysis of qualitative empirical data, a systematic literature review will be conducted to explore the state of the art knowledge on which organizational factors have been identified as important to effectively integrate research into PA policy making.
Analyses will focus on the explicit use of research in 25 European and Canadian PA policies with the use of content analysis, and the role of research compared to other kinds of knowledge as well as factors influencing the use of research including the organizational factors determining research use in three cases of local level PA policy making in Denmark with the use of an inductive qualitative analysis approach.
The results of the project will be disseminated through four publications in scientific peer-reviewed journals related to each research question, as well as through lectures, participation in national interest group on evidence-informed policymaking, internal research seminars as well as presentations on scientific congresses within public health, public policymaking, knowledge transfer and evidence-informed decision making.
Arja R Aro, Ph.d., DSc, Professor, Syddansk Universitet.
Thomas Skovgaard, lektor, Ph.d., Studieleder, Bevægelse, kultur og Samfund, Institut for Idræt og Biomekanik, Syddansk Universitet
Link til ph.d.-afhandling i pdf-format uden artikler