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Health Communication

Strategies for Developing Global Health Programs


Edited By Do Kyun Kim, Arvind Singhal and Gary L. Kreps

Promotion of healthy behaviors and prevention of disease are inextricably linked to cultural understandings of health and well-being. Health communication scholarship and practice can substantially and strategically contribute to people living safer, healthier, and happier lives. This book represents a concrete step in that direction by establishing a strategic framework for guiding global and local health practices.
Taking a multi-disciplinary approach, the volume includes state-of-the-art theories that can be applied to health communication interventions and practical guidelines about how to design, implement, and evaluate effective health communication interventions.
Few books have synthesized such a broad range of theories and strategies of health communication that are applicable globally, and also provided clear advice about how to apply such strategies. This volume combines academic research and field experience, guided by past and future research agendas and on-the-ground implementation opportunities.
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Chapter 15 Designing Logos for Health Campaigns: Convergence of Semiotics and the Diffusion of Innovations (Do Kyun Kim, University of Louisiana at Lafayette)


Do Kyun Kim, University of Louisiana at Lafayette

Although many logos have been used in health campaigns, few studies have examined the appropriateness and effectiveness of health campaign logos. In addition, the process of creating a logo has rarely been described in practical reports of health campaigns. However, the importance of a logo as a visual representation of a health campaign much exceeds how it is considered among health professionals because it arouses the initial impression about a health campaign among the target populations and is often the most memorable image of a health campaign.

This chapter focuses on how to design health campaign logos based upon a theoretical evaluation of the red ribbon. This logo has become an important part of world-wide HIV/AIDS campaigns and has been spread to numerous target populations through as many communication channels as possible, including fliers, brochures, television, and billboards. Based on the evaluation of the red ribbon logo, this chapter contributes to designing a culturally appropriate health campaign logo.

For designing a logo especially for a global health campaign, different sense-making processes among different groups of people increase the likelihood of possible misinterpretations of the logo, which greatly affects its appropriateness and effectiveness. Theoretically, the misinterpretations of a logo among different cultures may occur due to the discrepancy of understanding between cultures as opposed to the Kantian proposition of existing universal understanding (Putnam, 1990). Similarly, Baldner (1996) argues the paradigm of “incompleteness” in the sense that it...

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