To honor some of health promotion’s best scientists and especially to recognize those who bring outstanding humanity to their field of inquiry and bigheartedness to their writing, I am pleased to announce the American Journal of Health Promotion’s “Papers of the Year” from 2018. As I worked with our Associate Editors in Chief on this formidable task of rating our favorites from 2018, I was reminded how our field’s leaders are offering ever more sophisticated insights into social forces that shape behaviors, policies that change cultures and interventions that evoke positive practices. You will see this year’s winners addressed timely and vital issues relating to mental and emotional health, community and organizational influences on well-being and the role of psychological and emotional resiliency. You will also surely share my observation that our field has never been more holistic, influential and impactful in examining how to address the health promotion needs of children and other vulnerable populations.

We hope you will return to again read the studies featured below because these are advancing our field through innovative experiments, thoughtful literature reviews and novel descriptive studies. Albert Einstein said: “To raise new questions, new possibilities, to regard old problems from a new angle, requires creative imagination and marks real advance in science.” Our appreciation goes out to these authors for testing bold ideas and taking risks by formulating novel research questions.

American Journal of Health Promotion Editors’ Picks: Papers of the Year for 2018

1. Forgiveness Working: Forgiveness, Health, and Productivity in the Workplace Loren Toussaint, PhD, Everett L. Worthington, Jr, PhD, Daryl R. Van Tongeren, PhD,  Joshua Hook, PhD, Jack W. Berry, PhD, Victoria A. Shivy, PhD, Andrea J. Miller, PhD, Don E. Davis, PhD, Vol. 32, Issue 1. https://doi.org/10.1177%2F0890117116662312

2. Identification of Undiagnosed Hyperlipidemia: Do Work Site Screening Programs Work? Alain K. Koyama, ScD, Vishal Bali, PhD, Irina Yermilov, MD, MPH, Antonio P. Legorreta, MD, MPH, Vol.32, Issue 4.  https://doi.org/10.1177/0890117116671537

3. An Evaluation of Army Wellness Center Clients’ Health-Related Outcomes Omar Rivera, PhD, Jessica Danielle Ford, PhD, Meredith Marie Hartzell, PhD, Todd Allan Hoover, MA, CHES, ACSM EP-C, Vol. 32, Issue 7. https://doi.org/10.1177/0890117117753184

4. Does Organizational and Coworker Support Moderate Diabetes Risk and Job Stress Among Employees? Marilyn B. Wolff, MPH, Jennifer L. Gay, PhD, Mark G. Wilson, HSD, David M. DeJoy, PhD, Robert J. Vandenberg, PhD, 32, Issue 4. https://doi.org/10.1177/0890117116685802

5. Source and Size of Social Support Network on Sedentary Behavior Among Older Adults Paul D. Loprinzi PhD, Elizabeth A. Crush, Vol. 32, Issue 1. https://doi.org/10.1177/0890117116686888

Editor in Chief Paper of the Year

Evaluation of a Behavioral Intervention with Multiple Components among Low-Income and Uninsured Adults with Obesity and Diabetes
SangNam Ahn, PhD, MPSA, Joonhyung Lee, PhD, Jenny Bartlett-Prescott, MA, Lisa Carson, MBA, Lindsey Post, MHA, Kenneth D. Ward, PhD, Vol.32, Issue 2.  https://doi.org/10.1177/0890117117696250

Editor in Chief Review Article of the Year

Collective Well-Being to Improve Population Health Outcomes: An Actionable Conceptual Model and Review of the Literature
Brita Roy, MD, MPH, MHS, Carley Riley, MD, MPP, MHS, Lindsay Sears, PhD, Elizabeth Y. Rula, PhD, Vol.32, Issue 8. https://doi.org/10.1177/0890117118791993

Michael P O’Donnell Paper of the Year

The Effect of Cost Sharing on an Employee Weight Loss Program: A Randomized Trial
Leslie K. John, PhD, Andrea B. Troxel, ScD, William S. Yancy, Jr, MD, Joelle Friedman, MPA, Jingsan Zhu, MBA, MS, Lin Yang, MS, Robert Galvin, MD, MBA, Karen Miller-Kovach, MBA, MS, RD, Scott D. Halpern, MD, PhD, George Loewenstein, PhD, Kevin Volpp, MD, PhD, Vol. 32, Issue 1.  https://doi.org/10.1177/0890117116671282

Dorothy Nyswander Paper of the Year

Examining How Neighborhood Socioeconomic Status, Geographic Accessibility, and Informational Accessibility Influence the Uptake of a Free Population-Level Physical Activity Intervention for Children Andrew F. Clark, BA, MA, PhD, Piotr Wilk, BSc, MSc, PhD, Christine A. Mitchell, BA, MA, Christine Smith, BSc, Josh Archer, BA, MA, Jason A. Gilliland, Vol. 32, Issue 2.  https://doi.org/10.1177/0890117117718433


Dorothy Nyswander

Dorothy Nyswander
Photo credit: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Dorothy_Nyswander

We dedicate our selection and publishing of these ‘best papers’ to all health promotion scientists who are addressing health disparities and achieving equity in communities. This year we added the Dorothy Nyswander Paper of the Year Award. Nyswander is considered the pioneer of the field of health education. She called for an “open society,” which was a society “where diversity is respected; where pressure groups cannot stifle and control the will of the majority or castigate the individual; where education brings upward mobility to all; where the best of health care is available to all; where poverty is a community disgrace not an individual’s weakness.”

Stephen Hawking said that “science is not only a disciple of reason but, also, one of romance and passion.” Look to these author’s discussion sections, in particular, to see how they applied what they learned to continuous improvement for our discipline and to enlarging our field’s reach. These leaders show us how thoughtful study methods and mindful scientific writing can be intentionally aligned with compassionate advocacy for health and well-being for all.

Papers of the Year Award Criteria

The award criteria our journal editors considered were applied for both the study and the paper such that the:

  1. Study addresses a topic of timely importance in health promotion.
  2. Research question is clearly stated and the methodologies used are well executed.
  3. Paper is often cited and/or downloaded.
  4. The study findings offer a unique contribution to the literature.
  5. Paper is well-written and enjoyable to read.

Congratulations to these first authors and co-authors. For scientists interested in submitting their research findings to SAGE Publishing and this Journal, see the author tab at the American Journal of Health Promotion. For questions about these awards, contact Paul E. Terry, PhD, Editor in Chief, American Journal of Health Promotion and Senior Fellow at HERO, a health and well-being research organization.

About SAGE Publishing

Sara Miller McCune founded SAGE Publishing in 1965 to support the dissemination of usable knowledge and educate a global community. SAGE is a leading international provider of innovative, high-quality content publishing more than 900 journals and over 800 new books each year, spanning a wide range of subject areas. Our growing selection of library products includes archives, data, case studies, and video. SAGE remains majority owned by our founder and after her lifetime will become owned by a charitable trust that secures the company’s continued independence. Principal offices are located in Los Angeles, London, New Delhi, Singapore, Washington DC, and Melbourne. www.sagepublishing.com

About HERO

Based in Waconia, MN, HERO (the Health Enhancement Research Organization) is a not-for-profit, 501(c)3 corporation that was established in 1996. HERO is dedicated to identifying and sharing best practices that improve the health and well-being of employees, their families, and communities. To learn more, visit www.hero-health.org. Follow us on Twitter @heroehm or LinkedIn.

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