Socio-Ecological and Logic Models

If you’ve read any of Urie Bronfenbrenner’s work, you, no doubt, know about the socio-ecological framework.  In that Bronfenbrenner asserts that we have “spheres of influence” in which we develop who we are and what we like and do.  That’s an easy way to understand why we become that person we see when we look in the mirror.

Another framework that helps us to organize our thoughts, objectives, and ultimate results is called the “logic model”.  I love the logic model.  As an abstract-random thinker (as opposed to “concrete-sequential), the logic model helps me to think linearly.  As a historian, I have the ability to think linearly when I’m looking at time lines of events. But when I approach my day, linear can go out the door.  So the logic model helps us to see a situation that needs to be addressed, decide who and what the players will be (inputs), what the activities around addressing the situation will be (outputs), and the different levels of results (short-term, medium-term, and long-term).  Of course long-term results (outcomes) are the future we hope to see.  Long-term outcomes are the ultimate.  “I put $500 a month in the bank”.  It’s happening, and there is not future tense in the long-term outcome.  I have my logic model workshop participants either tie their shoes or get dressed for the day using a logic model.  Believe it or not, you use a logic model more often than you think!

Now, I have a colleague who worked on a national nutrition program.  Her team, in their infinite wisdom, combined the socio-ecological and logic model in one document to address a working model to bring nutrition to the masses.  I love their model and have adapted it into a model that I call, “adaptive and culturally relevant practices”.  My first go at the title was, “culturally relevant and adaptive practices”, but you can see it made for a terrible acronym!

As some background, my work is to find ways to address inequities that exist among families living in poverty and families of color.  I say if we see a situation, we can find ways to address those inequities with the help of a logic model that’s been embedded with the socio-ecological model. My example is the featured photo today.

Thanks to Major F.M. Hernandez (U.S. Army) and Dr. Charlotte Olsen for collaborating with me on this.

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