Evidence for Action: Making Health a Shared Value

Funding Agency:
Robert Wood Johnson Foundation

The purpose of this call for proposals (CFP) is to improve our understanding of the Action Area 1 drivers* and outcomes related to health, well-being and equity, particularly with respect to disadvantaged children and families. A current lack of empirical evidence limits our ability to identify strategies with the potential to “drive” this Action Area forward. In addition, although these drivers are strongly correlated with individual health outcomes, we lack compelling evidence of the causal directions and the magnitudes of effects on health, well-being, and equity.

We seek evidence on the extent to which Action Area 1 drivers—mindsets and expectations, sense of community, and civic engagement—can be changed through intervention at the individual or population levels to result in better health, well-being and equity outcomes.

An ideal study to provide such evidence would experimentally manipulate a driver, measure changes in that driver, and then measure resulting health impacts. However, we recognize that a variety of constraints could preclude such a design within the parameters of this funding opportunity. Thus, we have established two key aims for funding under this CFP:

  • Aim 1: To test the effects of specific interventions on the Action Area 1 drivers, in order to determine the extent to which they can be changed; and
  • Aim 2: To establish evidence of causal relationships between Action Area 1 drivers and health outcomes.

While projects that can achieve both aims are preferred, we also anticipate funding research that addresses either of the aims independently. In addition, we hope to support research that can assess the potential of drivers to “move the needle” on health, well-being, and equity outcomes for children and families by examining Action Area 1 drivers within the context of underlying and structural determinants of health.

Researchers are not limited to the specific terminology used here to define the drivers. We will consider projects that apply broad interpretations of what drivers could embody, and that propose novel ways to conceptualize or frame drivers within the Action Framework. Moreover, achieving a Culture of Health involves multiple factors working interactively in complex systems. It is therefore appropriate to think about Action Area 1 drivers not in isolation, but rather as part of these dynamic systems, in which synergy may exist among multiple drivers.

Deadline for Letter of Intent: June 1, 2018

Agency Website

Areas of Interest

Action Area 1, “Making Health a Shared Value” is a central component of the Action Framework, and highlights the importance of individual, family, and community factors in renewing and sustaining a societal commitment to health and health equity. Action Area 1 consists of three drivers:

Mindsets and expectations—how people think about health, well-being and equity, and the extent to which they value health and view their own health as interconnected with the health of others. Mindsets and expectations, at both the individual and community levels, impact the decisions and actions necessary to promote health.

Sense of community—ways in which people feel connected to physical or social communities. People with stronger social support generally have better health, and more cohesive communities and groups can be more effective at mobilizing to bring about change.

Civic engagement—the wide range of activities that individuals and groups perform, including voting, volunteering, organizing, and other forms of service or advocacy, to bring changes to society. Engagement occurs at both the individual or organizational level; both are considered essential to creating the conditions that enable populations to thrive. 

Eligibility Requirements

Preference will be given to applicant organizations that are either institutes of higher education, public entities or nonprofit organizations that are tax-exempt under Section 501(c)(3) of the Internal Revenue Code, but other types of nonprofit and for-profit organizations are eligible to apply. Applicant organizations must be based in the United States or its territories. While the principal investigator is not required to hold an advanced degree, the applicant team must demonstrate the ability to conduct the proposed research.

We recognize that research on Action Area 1 drivers may be undertaken through the lens of many disciplines, including but not limited to: anthropology, child development, community development, economics, education, epidemiology, health policy, medicine, history, political science, psychology, public health, sociology, and urban planning. We therefore welcome applications from any discipline, as well as applicant teams and research designs that are interdisciplinary in nature. We also encourage applicants representing diverse geographic areas and first-time applicants to apply.

Amount Description

• We will award up to $2.5 million through this CFP, with the majority of funding dedicated to research that is either specific to disadvantaged children and families, or will benefit these groups.

• There is not an explicit budget per grant. Applicants should request the amount of funding needed to complete the proposed research project, including both direct and indirect costs for the entire duration of the study.

Funding Type

Grant

Eligibility

Faculty

Category

Arts & Humanities
Community Outreach and Engagement
Interdisciplinary
Medical
Medical - Basic Science
Medical - Clinical Science
Social Sciences

External Deadline

June 1, 2018