Cairns G, MacDonald L, De Andrade M & Angus K (2011) A literature review of trust and reputation management in communicable disease public health. European Centre for Disease Prevention and Control (ECDC). European Centre for Disease Prevention and Control. http://www.ecdc.europa.eu/en/publications/publications/forms/ECDC_DispForm.aspx?ID=763
Executive Summary: A literature review of trust and reputation management by and for public health organisations involved in communicable disease control was conducted by the Institute for Social Marketing. The Institute is a joint research initiative of the University of Stirling and the Open University in the UK.
The review examined the international English-language literature published during the period 2005-2010, drawn from a range of communication sub-disciplines. A glossary of the sub-disciplines is provided in the appendix.
The evidence base was found to be in an emergent phase and is therefore somewhat limited, although largely consistent. Elements of good practice identified included the need for long-term and proactive planning of trust and reputation management; strong media relations skills; proactive relationship building with key stakeholders; integration with technical disease prevention and control functions; and enhanced commitment to transparency and two-way dialogues.
A focus on crisis communication, mass (undifferentiated) communication and communication to support technical functions was apparent in the literature. A limited understanding of the role and nature of risk communication; the benefits of adopting a strategic, rather than reactive approach to trust and reputation management and the potential benefits of full integration with immediate and long-term public health goals was also apparent.
Recommendations for future research and development of good practice are evaluations specifically focused on the impact of public health activities on trust and reputation; adopting a strategic approach to trust and reputation planning which coordinates the full range of communication functions and objectives; plus organisational capacity building in communication functions such as risk communication, environmental scanning and mass media relations.
; Public health; Primary care (Medicine)