. Through application of existing knowledge, much of the cancer burden is preventable. State- level practitioners are in ideal positions to affect programs and policies related to cancer control. Yet sparse knowledge exists regarding effective approaches for dissemination of evidence-based programs and policies (EBPPs) among practice audiences. There is a need to apply theory and organizational change approaches from outside of the health sector. Goal. Our primary goal is to increase the dissemination of EBPPs to control cancer, focusing on the uptake of effective approaches among state-level practitioners. Methods. To advance dissemination science, our project applies state-of-the-art methods in the dissemination of EBPPs among cancer control practitioners in public health departments. Cancer control practitioners are people who direct and implement population-based intervention programs in agencies or in community-based coalitions. We will make use of Diffusion of Innovations, supplemented by Institutional Theory, to inform our conceptual framework, dissemination activities, and measures. Institutional Theory uses an interdisciplinary approach to understand how social, governmental, political, cultural, and commercial institutions influence decision-making. This project includes two overlapping phases. In Phase 1, we will develop, refine and finalize measures (both self-reported and objective) to assess the effectiveness of our dissemination activities to facilitate uptake of EBPPs. Phase 2 uses a group-randomized effectiveness trial to evaluate the active dissemination of already proven EBPPs in 14 states (7 intervention, 7 control). The active dissemination activities include: conducting dissemination workshops, fostering institutional changes, and using knowledge brokers. Throughout the grant cycle, we will engage practitioners as partners to assure our approaches are timely and relevant for real world settings. Dissemination and innovations. We will conduct several activities to ensure that tools and interventions from our grant are useful, relevant, and ready for widespread dissemination when funding ends. To prepare for dissemination, we will assemble and work with an advisory group, capture project costs, and conduct qualitative case studies. Our results are likely to impact the field by enhancing abilities to: 1) conduct active dissemination in public health practice settings, 2) speed up the translation of cancer prevention knowledge into public health practice, and 3) measure dissemination of EBPPs. This research is innovative by working in real world settings on a multi-state scale, applying new theory from outside of health (Institutional Theory), and using social network analysis to better understand the flow of knowledge.

Public Health Relevance

This project is relevant to public health because it addresses EBPPs that can result in population-level reductions in premature cancer morbidity and mortality. Sparse knowledge exists regarding effective approaches for dissemination of research-tested interventions among real world public health audiences. Upon completion, our study will provide public health practice-relevant dissemination strategies that can be adapted to other settings and risk factors.

National Institute of Health (NIH)
National Cancer Institute (NCI)
Research Project (R01)
Project #
Application #
Study Section
Community-Level Health Promotion Study Section (CLHP)
Program Officer
Hesse, Bradford
Project Start
Project End
Budget Start
Budget End
Support Year
Fiscal Year
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Washington University
Social Sciences
Schools of Social Welfare/Work
Saint Louis
United States
Zip Code
Brownson, Ross C; Eyler, Amy A; Harris, Jenine K et al. (2018) Getting the Word Out: New Approaches for Disseminating Public Health Science. J Public Health Manag Pract 24:102-111
Estabrooks, Paul A; Brownson, Ross C; Pronk, Nicolaas P (2018) Dissemination and Implementation Science for Public Health Professionals: An Overview and Call to Action. Prev Chronic Dis 15:E162
Brownson, Ross C; Fielding, Jonathan E; Green, Lawrence W (2018) Building Capacity for Evidence-Based Public Health: Reconciling the Pulls of Practice and the Push of Research. Annu Rev Public Health 39:27-53
Hu, Hengrui; Allen, Peg; Yan, Yan et al. (2018) Organizational Supports for Research Evidence Use in State Public Health Agencies: A Latent Class Analysis. J Public Health Manag Pract :
Allen, Peg; O'Connor, Jean C; Best, Leslie A et al. (2018) Management Practices to Build Evidence-Based Decision-Making Capacity for Chronic Disease Prevention in Georgia: A Case Study. Prev Chronic Dis 15:E92
Allen, Peg; Jacob, Rebekah R; Lakshman, Meenakshi et al. (2018) Lessons Learned in Promoting Evidence-Based Public Health: Perspectives from Managers in State Public Health Departments. J Community Health 43:856-863
Stamatakis, Katherine A; Ferreira Hino, Adriano Akira; Allen, Peg et al. (2017) Results from a psychometric assessment of a new tool for measuring evidence-based decision making in public health organizations. Eval Program Plann 60:17-23
Tabak, Rachel G; Padek, Margaret M; Kerner, Jon F et al. (2017) Dissemination and Implementation Science Training Needs: Insights From Practitioners and Researchers. Am J Prev Med 52:S322-S329
Brownson, Ross C; Allen, Peg; Jacob, Rebekah R et al. (2017) Controlling Chronic Diseases Through Evidence-Based Decision Making: A Group-Randomized Trial. Prev Chronic Dis 14:E121
Brownson, Ross C; Proctor, Enola K; Luke, Douglas A et al. (2017) Building capacity for dissemination and implementation research: one university's experience. Implement Sci 12:104

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