Table 2

Coding guide and sample coded text
Code Definition Sample Text
Barriers Challenges or obstacles encountered by the participant “I think it can be overwhelming to think about how much you have to bring in to solving a problem”
Crossing Sectors and Silos Practices or approaches that cross boundaries/jurisdictions of sectors, organizations, or other silos “I would say that each project has a core group of stakeholders – that group of stakeholders is rarely within the context of one discipline or one sector”
Environment Discussion of the environment - defining it, environmental health issues, its connection to public health It’s kind of a systems focus on how changing one piece changes all of those nested hierarchies of environments that are sitting within each other”
Equity Discussion of issues of equity especially around health “Photovoice was a really powerful way of hearing the most vulnerable within our community. And really engaging them as well. Not just hearing them but helping them to develop skills and advocacy”
Governance Discussion of current and possible models of governance, and their implications to public health “So there are a lot of times, as a community our hands are tied […] So sometimes we can’t do anything because of bureaucracy”
Health Discussion of health - defining it, important health issues “if we’re focusing on human health and well-being, often we forget about broader ecosystem and ecological issues […] sustainability issues, energy”
Important Need An identified need or important issue for public health practice “a real recognition that we need to reach out to stakeholders and other jurisdictions if we have a broader systems based approach and learn how to work with them and learn how to bring them into the tent“
Indicators Discussion around measurement tools or indicators for health “People across North America have been struggling with this idea about how do you develop indicators for a so-called healthy food system or community food security
Methods Discussion of innovative or interesting approaches in public health “deliberative policy analysis […] it’s the idea that through reflection and deliberation on policy issues, we actually develop some policy learning and that’s what can move change forward”
Participatory Approaches Discussion of participatory approaches in public health practice. Also includes peer research, community-based research, community engagement and community involvement. “Community engagement - how do we have those conversations with community members for them to understand and be a part of this process?”
Perspectives, Context Discussion of other perspectives or other contexts, and their role in public health. “What we’re really trying to do is to have those sectors that we haven’t traditionally partnered with. I think traditionally […] we’ve had like-minded people at the table and so those people who have a different point of view from us, not necessarily are we hearing their voices”
Support System Support systems or facilitators for the work of the participant. “There’s been lots of support definitely within the community”
Sustainability Discussion of sustainability, self-sustaining systems, or visioning for the future. “So what are we doing to our biophysical environment both in terms of resource use, resource extraction? So how much are we consuming that we are taking away from future generations?”
Systems Thinking Consideration of smaller/larger systems, drawing connections, recognizing nested scales “a broader understanding that if you’re thinking from an ecosystem perspective, if you’re changing something in any of those environments, it’s going to affect what’s happening in the others”
Inter- or Transdisciplinary Practices Practices which engage multiple disciplines and/or transcends disciplinary thinking to explore different types of knowledge and ways of knowing “It’s a wide variety of evidence. It’s qualitative and quantitative. It’s peer-reviewed literature but also policy literature […], it includes stakeholder perspectives on the issue, it includes gathering evidence about the experience of jurisdictions

Leung et al.

Leung et al. BMC Public Health 2012 12:358   doi:10.1186/1471-2458-12-358

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