Advancing strategies for agenda setting by health policy coalitions: a network analysis of the Canadian chronic disease prevention survey

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  • Health in all policies can address chronic disease morbidity and mortality by increasing population-level physical activity and healthy eating, and reducing tobacco and alcohol use. Both governmental and non-governmental policy influencers are instrumental for health policy that modifies political, economic, and social environments. Policy influencers are informed and persuaded by coalitions that support or oppose changing the status quo. Empirical research examining policy influencers’ contact with coalitions, as a social psychological exposure with health policy outcomes, can benefit from application of health communication theories. Accordingly, we analyzed responses to the 2014 Chronic Disease Prevention Survey for 184 Canadian policy influencers employed in provincial governments, municipalities, large workplaces, school boards, and the media. In addition to contact levels with coalitions, respondents’ jurisdiction, organization, and ideology were analyzed as potential moderators. Calculating authority score centrality using network analysis, we determined health policy supporters to be more central in policy influencer networks, and theorized their potential to impact health policy public agenda setting via priming and framing processes. We discuss the implications of our results as presenting opportunities to more effectively promote health policy through priming and framing by coordinating coalitions across risk behaviors to advance a societal imperative for chronic disease prevention.

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    Article (Draft / Submitted)
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    Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivatives 4.0 International