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Process evaluation of an environmental walking and healthy eating pilot in small rural worksites


  • Devine, Carol M.
  • Maley, Mary
  • Farrell, Tracy J.
  • Warren, Barbour
  • Sadigov, Shamil
  • Carroll, Johanna


Small Steps are Easier Together (SS) was a pilot environmental intervention in small rural worksites in Upstate New York in collaboration with Extension educators. Worksite leaders teamed with co-workers to select and implement environmental changes to increase walking steps over individual baseline and to choose healthy eating options over 10 weeks. Participants were 226 primarily white, women employees in 5 sites. A mixed methods process evaluation, conducted to identify determinants of intervention effectiveness and to explain differences in outcomes across worksites, included surveys, self-reports of walking and eating, interviews, focus groups, and an intervention log. The evaluation assessed reach, characteristics of recruited participants, dose delivered, dose received, and context and compared sites on walking and eating outcomes. Emergent elements of participant-reported dose received included: active leadership, visible environmental changes, critical mass of participants, public display of accomplishments, accountability to co-workers, and group decision making. Participants at sites with high reach and dose were significantly more likely than sites with low reach and dose to achieve intervention goals. Although this small pilot needs replication, these findings describe how these evaluation methods can be applied and analyzed in an environmental intervention and provide information on trends in the data.

Suggested Citation

  • Devine, Carol M. & Maley, Mary & Farrell, Tracy J. & Warren, Barbour & Sadigov, Shamil & Carroll, Johanna, 2012. "Process evaluation of an environmental walking and healthy eating pilot in small rural worksites," Evaluation and Program Planning, Elsevier, vol. 35(1), pages 88-96.
  • Handle: RePEc:eee:epplan:v:35:y:2012:i:1:p:88-96
    DOI: 10.1016/j.evalprogplan.2011.08.002

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    References listed on IDEAS

    1. repec:aph:ajpbhl:10.2105/ajph.2006.100313_2 is not listed on IDEAS
    2. Kendall McDaniel, 2001. "Small business in rural America," Main Street Economist, Federal Reserve Bank of Kansas City, issue May.
    3. repec:aph:ajpbhl:2004:94:10:1682-1686_5 is not listed on IDEAS
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    1. repec:eee:epplan:v:63:y:2017:i:c:p:7-17 is not listed on IDEAS
    2. Rowan, Margo S. & Mason, Melanie & Robitaille, Annie & Labrecque, Lise & Tocchi, Cathy Lambert, 2013. "An innovative medical and dental hygiene clinic for street youth: Results of a process evaluation," Evaluation and Program Planning, Elsevier, vol. 40(C), pages 10-16.


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