Co-creating physical activity interventions: a mixed methods evaluation approach

Popp J, Grüne E, Carl J, Semrau J, Pfeifer K (2021)

Publication Type: Journal article

Publication year: 2021


Book Volume: 19

Article Number: 37

Issue: 1

DOI: 10.1186/s12961-021-00699-w


Co-creation strategies, such as cooperative planning, are promising as a means to ensure that physical activity interventions address real-world problems and are tailored to the target group. This has already been validated in diverse settings. However, questions targeting the transferability of cooperative planning to new settings and the key factors influencing its success or failure remain unclear. At the same time, co-creation processes are complex, and evaluation can be challenging. Following calls for detailed reporting, this paper describes the programme activities, the underlying logic, and methodological design of a study that aims to evaluate the transfer of cooperative planning to new settings and to explore the associated key determinants.

Cooperative planning was utilized as a strategy to target physical activity promotion in three real-world German settings in the nursing care and automotive mechatronics sectors. This involved researchers working alongside stakeholders from practice and policy to conjointly develop new interventions to promote physical activity in physically demanding jobs. A pragmatic approach is used to evaluate both the transferability and key determinants of this strategy. We developed a logic model for this co-creation process that describes the underlying assumptions and guides the evaluation. The evaluation outcomes of this study include planning meetings, newly developed interventions, and the determinants that are likely to affect cooperative planning. Quantitative and qualitative data will be collected using questionnaires, documents, and interviews. The quantitative data will be analysed descriptively, while the qualitative data will mainly be analysed using qualitative content analysis, split by settings. Subsequently, data triangulation will be used to integrate the quantitative and qualitative findings, which will then be compared across all three settings.

The study findings will contribute to a better understanding of co-creation strategies, their transferability, and key determinants. The practical implications can include a checklist for assessing key determinants and a guideline for transferring cooperative planning into new settings to benefit more people. Ultimately, this study will help to advance co-creation strategies and may be relevant for researchers, practitioners, and policy-makers targeting physical activity promotion in various contexts.

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How to cite


Popp, J., Grüne, E., Carl, J., Semrau, J., & Pfeifer, K. (2021). Co-creating physical activity interventions: a mixed methods evaluation approach. Health research policy and systems, 19.


Popp, Johanna, et al. "Co-creating physical activity interventions: a mixed methods evaluation approach." Health research policy and systems 19 (2021).

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