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J Phys Act Health. 2008 Jul;5(4):488-503.

Environmental and policy approaches for promoting physical activity in the United States: a research agenda.

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Prevention Research Center, School of Public Health, Saint Louis University, Saint Louis, MO 63104, USA.



Environmental and policy approaches are promising strategies to raise population-wide rates of physical activity; yet, little attention has been paid to the development and prioritization of a research agenda on these topics that will have relevance for both researchers and practitioners.


Using input from hundreds of researchers and practitioners, a research agenda was developed for promoting physical activity through environmental and policy interventions. Concept mapping was used to develop the agenda.


Among those who brainstormed ideas, 42% were researchers and 33% were practitioners. The data formed a concept map with 9 distinct clusters. Based on ratings by both researchers and practitioners, the policy research cluster on city planning and design emerged as the most important, with economic evaluation second.


Our research agenda sets the stage for new inquiries to better understand the environmental and policy influences on physical activity.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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