Online Program

Building practice-based evidence: Leading change through methodological approaches for defining a researchable problem

Monday, November 2, 2015

Christina Welter, DrPH, MPH, DrPH Program, Univ of Ill at Chicago, School of Public Health, Chicago, IL
Patrick Lenihan, PhD, MUPP, Executive Director, Public Health Institute of Metropolitan Chicago, Chicago, IL
Steve Seweryn, EdD, MPH, Community Epidemiology and Health Planning Unit, Cook County Department of Public Health, Oak Forest, IL
Eve Pinsker, PhD, Community Health Sciences, University of Illinois at Chicago School of Public Health, Chicago, IL
Michael Petros, DrPH, Environmental and Occupational Health Sciences, University of Illinois at Chicago, Chicago, IL
Kristina Risley, DrPH, MPH, University of Illinois at Chicago School of Public Health
The discipline of public health is challenged with both new and ongoing complex problems, without single solutions. With implementation of major system-wide initiatives such as the Affordable Care Act; persistence of chronic health problems; profound disparities; and emerging public health threats, leadership is vitally needed to transform the public health system to meet these challenges in more effective and realistic ways.

The University of Illinois at Chicago Doctorate in Public Health Leadership Program focuses on strengthening public health leaders’ ability to catalyze change and to contribute to the evidence-base of practice. The program’s leadership definition includes a focus on influencing sustainable systems change by building capacity of and with the system while maximizing public value.  An important part of the process of leading change and contributing to the evidence-base of public health practice is a comprehensive understanding of the problem from both the practice and academic perspectives.

Building the evidence base of practice traditionally focuses on inquiry about a problem researched with a robust and traditional research design, data collection and analysis. Limited methodological consideration is seemingly given to the ability to fully understand the problem definition. Recognizing that today’s practice problems are steeped in complexity, the UIC DrPH Program has created a pilot methodological approach toward a well developed  understanding of these problems, using concepts and tools of systematic reflection and systems thinking.  This approach promotes development of innovative solutions more clearly linked to problem complexities and system-level improvements while contributing to the evidence base of public health.

Learning Areas:

Administration, management, leadership
Public health or related research
Systems thinking models (conceptual and theoretical models), applications related to public health

Learning Objectives:
Define the role of leadership in the current state of public health Describe steps in the pilot methodological approach to problem definition Discuss examples of methods application using DrPH student dissertation work

Keyword(s): Evidence-Based Practice, Methodology

Presenting author's disclosure statement:

Qualified on the content I am responsible for because: I am the Associate Director of the DrPH in Leadership and the Director of the MidAmerica Center for Public Health Practice.
Any relevant financial relationships? No

I agree to comply with the American Public Health Association Conflict of Interest and Commercial Support Guidelines, and to disclose to the participants any off-label or experimental uses of a commercial product or service discussed in my presentation.