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Evaluation Design for Public Health Communication Programs


This piece uses case studies to illustrate how researchers have tried to evaluate public health communications programs in practice, and to bring to the fore the design logic of their approaches. The question that underpins the entire paper is whether or not it is possible to do useful evaluation that will reduce uncertainty about whether a program was successful, even if it is not possible to implement (or it does not make sense to implement) an ideal experimental design. This piece discusses the logic of design in a context of often messy communication interventions.

Primary Toolkit:

Communications Toolkit

Keyword Area:

Health Promotion and Health Education, Risk Communication, Workforce Competency


Institutional Author:

Robert C. Hornik, Ph.D.





The NACCHO Toolbox is a repository of available resources to help local public health practitioners. Tools are produced by local, state, and federal agencies, as well as academic institutions and other stakeholders. The contents of this Toolbox are solely the responsibility of the authors and do not necessarily reflect any official recommendations of NACCHO. NACCHO makes no express or implied warranty with respect to the contents and disclaims liability for any damages arising from or connected to the use of the material in this Toolbox.