Is the increasing policy use of impact assessment in Europe likely to undermine efforts to achieve healthy public policy?

Katherine E Smith, Gary Fooks, Jeff Collin, Heide Weishaar, Anna B. Gilmore

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

39 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

European policymakers have recently become increasingly committed to using Impact Assessment (IA) to inform policy decisions. Welcoming this development, the public health community has not yet paid sufficient attention to conceptual concerns about IA or to corporate efforts to shape the way in which IA is used. This essay is a thematic analysis of literature concerning IA and associated tools and a related assessment of the European Union's (EU) new 'integrated' IA tool. Eight key concerns regarding IA are identified from the literature, many of which relate to the potential for undue corporate influence. Assessment of the EU's IA tool suggests that many of these concerns are valid. The findings raise crucial questions about the role of IA in public policy. By focusing mainly on the impact on the economy and business environment, the EU's current approach to IA may undermine healthy public policy. Those interested in public health need to acknowledge and respond to the problems associated with IA and evaluate the effects of 'integrated' IA tools on policy decisions affecting public health.
LanguageEnglish
Pages478-487
Number of pages10
JournalJournal of Epidemiology and Community Health
Volume64
Issue number6
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 13 May 2010

Fingerprint

Public Policy
public policy
Public Health
European Union
public health
EU

Keywords

  • health impacts
  • decision making
  • health impact
  • health policy
  • public health

Cite this

@article{8dfde0090a1f46e1b3fcd2bac67f278a,
title = "Is the increasing policy use of impact assessment in Europe likely to undermine efforts to achieve healthy public policy?",
abstract = "European policymakers have recently become increasingly committed to using Impact Assessment (IA) to inform policy decisions. Welcoming this development, the public health community has not yet paid sufficient attention to conceptual concerns about IA or to corporate efforts to shape the way in which IA is used. This essay is a thematic analysis of literature concerning IA and associated tools and a related assessment of the European Union's (EU) new 'integrated' IA tool. Eight key concerns regarding IA are identified from the literature, many of which relate to the potential for undue corporate influence. Assessment of the EU's IA tool suggests that many of these concerns are valid. The findings raise crucial questions about the role of IA in public policy. By focusing mainly on the impact on the economy and business environment, the EU's current approach to IA may undermine healthy public policy. Those interested in public health need to acknowledge and respond to the problems associated with IA and evaluate the effects of 'integrated' IA tools on policy decisions affecting public health.",
keywords = "health impacts, decision making, health impact, health policy, public health",
author = "Smith, {Katherine E} and Gary Fooks and Jeff Collin and Heide Weishaar and Gilmore, {Anna B.}",
year = "2010",
month = "5",
day = "13",
doi = "10.1136/jech.2009.094300",
language = "English",
volume = "64",
pages = "478--487",
journal = "Journal of Epidemiology and Community Health",
issn = "0143-005X",
number = "6",

}

Is the increasing policy use of impact assessment in Europe likely to undermine efforts to achieve healthy public policy? / Smith, Katherine E; Fooks, Gary; Collin, Jeff; Weishaar, Heide ; Gilmore, Anna B.

In: Journal of Epidemiology and Community Health, Vol. 64, No. 6, 13.05.2010, p. 478-487.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

TY - JOUR

T1 - Is the increasing policy use of impact assessment in Europe likely to undermine efforts to achieve healthy public policy?

AU - Smith, Katherine E

AU - Fooks, Gary

AU - Collin, Jeff

AU - Weishaar, Heide

AU - Gilmore, Anna B.

PY - 2010/5/13

Y1 - 2010/5/13

N2 - European policymakers have recently become increasingly committed to using Impact Assessment (IA) to inform policy decisions. Welcoming this development, the public health community has not yet paid sufficient attention to conceptual concerns about IA or to corporate efforts to shape the way in which IA is used. This essay is a thematic analysis of literature concerning IA and associated tools and a related assessment of the European Union's (EU) new 'integrated' IA tool. Eight key concerns regarding IA are identified from the literature, many of which relate to the potential for undue corporate influence. Assessment of the EU's IA tool suggests that many of these concerns are valid. The findings raise crucial questions about the role of IA in public policy. By focusing mainly on the impact on the economy and business environment, the EU's current approach to IA may undermine healthy public policy. Those interested in public health need to acknowledge and respond to the problems associated with IA and evaluate the effects of 'integrated' IA tools on policy decisions affecting public health.

AB - European policymakers have recently become increasingly committed to using Impact Assessment (IA) to inform policy decisions. Welcoming this development, the public health community has not yet paid sufficient attention to conceptual concerns about IA or to corporate efforts to shape the way in which IA is used. This essay is a thematic analysis of literature concerning IA and associated tools and a related assessment of the European Union's (EU) new 'integrated' IA tool. Eight key concerns regarding IA are identified from the literature, many of which relate to the potential for undue corporate influence. Assessment of the EU's IA tool suggests that many of these concerns are valid. The findings raise crucial questions about the role of IA in public policy. By focusing mainly on the impact on the economy and business environment, the EU's current approach to IA may undermine healthy public policy. Those interested in public health need to acknowledge and respond to the problems associated with IA and evaluate the effects of 'integrated' IA tools on policy decisions affecting public health.

KW - health impacts

KW - decision making

KW - health impact

KW - health policy

KW - public health

UR - https://www.scopus.com/record/display.uri?eid=2-s2.0-77953731096&origin=inward&txGid=0a790160644ee948e27a42a1063a0890

U2 - 10.1136/jech.2009.094300

DO - 10.1136/jech.2009.094300

M3 - Article

VL - 64

SP - 478

EP - 487

JO - Journal of Epidemiology and Community Health

T2 - Journal of Epidemiology and Community Health

JF - Journal of Epidemiology and Community Health

SN - 0143-005X

IS - 6

ER -