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The Fourth Estate of Health and Medicine

Journalists occupy an important, yet often unacknowledged, role in the health system by providing a dispassionate account of the system’s strengths, weaknesses, and opportunities to the public. It is through journalists that much of the research we scientists and practitioners produce gets communicated to the audiences likely to use them. This fourth estate is also […]

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Marketing Metaphors of Meaning in Complexity

Marketing is largely about identity and stories about identity. Marketers want to influence what you do (choose, use, purchase, etc..) and how you experience what you do when you do it. To do this, they know the importance of design and the stories to accompany that design. Design, when done well, is partly about creating empathy with those who are to benefit from the products of design and the best products out there are ones that apply empathy and guide behaviour at the same time. Storytelling is the vehicle that links them together.

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Contemplating Better Public Health: Perspective is Everything

How might we apply the lessons from cigarette use to mental health promotion? How might we design programs, spaces, places, and social conventions that promote the quiet contemplative acts that come from taking that cigarette break and offer potentially great value to tobacco users without creating harmful effects for others?

Engaging design, complexity and imagining the systems that influence them both might yield considerable insight into how we manage other public health problems and how we might better promote mental health in the protection of physical well-being.

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Social Networks: Beyond the Numbers

Powerful social network research is as much about having a good statistician as it is an anthropologist and together, they need to have the story that comes from it, woven together by the users.

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Design and Health Promotion

Complex problems like chronic disease, health inequity, access to health care, civic engagement, global migration, and food security are ones that require a diverse set of perspectives, abductive (design) thinking, systems perspectives and ways to bring them all together. Design is a way to do that. Health promotion, rather than health care is the focus that will get us from treating problems to developing solutions.

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Seeing Simplicity / Seeing Complexity

We often confuse simplicity and complexity, which can have harmful effects on our health and social wellbeing. The confusion between the complex and the simple as it relates to public health is discussed in this look at issues like vaccination and cigarette smoking.

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eHealth Deja Vu All Over Again

It took more than 15 years for public eHealth approaches like using the Web for tobacco control to take hold, in large part because there wasn’t the ‘evidence’. In the age of social media, are we doomed to see history repeat itself? This post looks at how in the area of social media education and adoption, it’s deja vu all over again.

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