Advances in Communication Research to Reduce Childhood Obesity

Jerome Williams

This volume of Advances in Communication Research to Reduce Childhood Obesity grew out of a conference of leading scholars in communication and media research focused on childhood obesity prevention, which the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation hosted. Despite the considerable attention the obesity epidemic has  received, I and my coeditors felt that there still remained many legal, methodological, and theoretical challenges confronting contemporary researchers who are interested in media effects on child development and health, as well as on the interventions used to minimize the health risks associated with childhood obesity.

Advances in Communication Research to Reduce Childhood Obesity addresses many critical questions in the field, such as the role and use of new media technology (e.g., digital marketing, social media, and online applications) that may encourage food preferences and consumption patterns that potentially can lead to obesity. It presents a plethora of perspectives that challenge us to think outside the box about factors linked to unhealthy food and beverage consumption and obesity among young people. 

— Jerome D. Williams, PhD

 

A look inside Advances in Communication Research to Reduce Childhood Obesity

Cereal Facts 2012

Overview, The IOM Report, and Integrated Marketing Communications

Part I of Advances in Communication Research to Reduce Childhood Obesity outlines foundational work in the area of food marketing to youth, reflecting on the seminal work of the IOM, and the progress made by private and public sector leaders.

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Legal, Ethical, and Policy Implications of Advertising

Part II of Advances in Communication Research to Reduce Childhood Obesity emphasizes the current guidelines employed by private companies and the government to reduce food and beverage marketing to youth.

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Measuring the Impact of Advertising Effects

This section of Advances in Communication Research to Reduce Childhood Obesity emphasizes the importance of defining characteristics of the digital arena so that we are better equipped to measure their influence on youth. 

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A Global Perspective of Food Marketing and the Role of Place

Part IV of Advances in Communication Research to Reduce Childhood Obesity examines several areas of the environment in which food marketing is particularly influential, including in and around schools and in-store marketing efforts directed toward children.

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Racial/Ethnic Minorities and Community Empowerment

This section of Advances in Communication Research to Reduce Childhood Obesity addresses a number of community-level strategies for engaging youth of diverse racial/ethnic backgrounds in healthy eating.

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Children engage in a physical activity break in the classroom at Cleminson Elementary School in El Monte, California.

Communicating About Physical Activity

Part VI of Advances in Communication Research to Reduce Childhood Obsesity addresses current efforts to encourage physical activity.

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Thinking Outside the Box: Finding Solutions to Reverse Childhood Obesity

Part VII of Advances in Communication Research to Reduce Childhood Obesity offers current strategies at the community, government, and industry levels to turn back the childhood obesity epidemic.

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RWJF Priority: Reduce youths’ exposure to the marketing of unhealthy foods through regulation, policy, and effective industry self-regulation 

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