The Social Marketing Association of North America (SMANA) Holds Its Inaugural Social and Behavior Change Forum in Washington, DC

By Gerda Gallop-Goodman, SMANA member

The Social Marketing Association of North America (SMANA) held its inaugural Social and Behavior Change Forum on October 10, 2018 in partnership with the Behavior, Energy and Climate Change (BECC) Conference at the Hyatt Regency Capitol Hill in Washington, DC. The theme of the forum: Leveraging the Intersections: Bringing together social issues, perspectives, and change agents to unlock today’s challenges, explored the intersections of health and the environment.

More than 65 attendees from across different behavior change sectors participated in the half-day event that began with a keynote address by Shannon Kraus, executive vice president at HKS Architects, on the role of design thinking in making meaningful change in our communities, health and healthcare. Through compelling examples, he showed the association between our health and the environment— where we live impacts how we live—and how design solutions can help improve our health. A panel discussion on unlocking today’s challenges in the area of food, included presentations on nutrition education interventions in Maryland schools, sustainable diets and the Meatless Monday Project, and reducing food waste/food recovery.

Selected presenters from Hager Sharp, Vanguard, and Rescue provided case studies on these timely social marketing in public health topics: increasing the quality of health care providers’ HPV vaccination recommendations, helping patients survive stroke, and social marketing strategies for preventing and reducing opioid misuse. A session of short presentations or “lightning talks” covered a diverse range of social and behavior change topics on urban transportation, financial savings, global conservation, sustainability and auto repair shops, and consumption behaviors and culture. And to close out the afternoon, participants had the opportunity to discuss issues and ideas generated from the forum as part of topic-specific roundtables on the environment, research, and health. Following the forum, attendees were invited to attend a networking happy hour to continue the conversation and meet other social marketing colleagues.

“No one of us can do this alone,” said Sandra Paredes, SMANA President, in her closing remarks. “This is about mobilizing our entire community. We’re trying to make a better world. We need to break out of our silos. The more we hear from each of us, the more we’ll stay connected.”

Entercom, a media and entertainment company, was the Innovator Sponsor of the forum. Caryn Ginsberg of Priority Visuals created graphic recordings from the presentations.

Last Updated on Friday, December 07, 2018 02:14 PM