Developing a Research Agenda for Promoting Physical Activity in Brazil Through Environmental and Policy Change

Reis et al. (2012) full text summary PDF

For which topic were research priorities identified?

physical activity

In which location was the research priority setting conducted?

South America - Brazil

Why was it conducted at all?

A growing area of interest involves environmental and policy interventions that encourage active lifestyles and increase levels of physical activity (PA). Evidence on the potential effectiveness of these types of interventions is rapidly growing. This context has led many organizations to advocate for more and improved interventions that promote PA through community-based policy and environmental changes. The adoption of a broader evidence base is dependent on a scientific approach (i.e., effectiveness), in addition to incorporating community experience into the intervention design (i.e., efficacy studies). While practitioners are often more oriented to such needs because they are exposed to more real world situations, researchers focus their attention on filling scientific gaps. This potential mismatch may undermine actions toward effective and sustainable environmental and policy modifications to promote PA.

What was the objective?

to identify the highest priorities for research on environmental and policy changes for promoting physical activity in Brazil, to uncover any gaps between researchers' and practitioners' priorities, and to consider which tools, methods, collaborative strategies, and actions could be useful to moving a research agenda forward

What was the outcome?

a ranking list of 15 research topics

How long did the research prioritization take?

February 2010 - January 2011

Which methods were used to identify research priorities?

meeting; survey

How were the priorities for research identified exactly?

Step 1: survey 1: participants were asked: One research topic that will best inform policy or environmental approaches for PA promotion is..., 266 statements submitted. Step 2: data processing: content analysis, 52 topics extracted. Step 3: survey 2: participants were asked to rate importance and feasibility of implementation within the next 5 years. Step 4: meeting: participants were asked to sort research ideas into categories

Which stakeholders took part?

Practitioners and researchers. Survey 1: 82 participants. Survey 2: 70 participants: 33 practitioners and 37 researchers. Meeting: 21 participants.

How were stakeholders recruited?

A list of practitioners was established.

Were stakeholders actively involved or did they just participate?

Stakeholders were mere participants of the research prioritization process; they were not actively involved in the process.