Inoculation and Narrative Strategies in Competitive Framing of Three Health Policy Issues

Jeff Niederdeppe, Kathryn Heley, Colleen L. Barry

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

42 Scopus citations


This article combines insights from competitive framing and persuasion research by comparing the impact of inoculation and narrative messages on support for policies designed to reduce obesity, cigarette use, and prescription painkiller addiction. A two-wave randomized experiment (n = 5,007 at time 1, t1, n = 3,901 at time 2, t2) tests whether inoculation and/or narrative messages offset the impact of industry anti-policy messages delivered both concurrently (t1) and with a 1 week delay (t2). We find that narrative messages outperformed inoculation messages at t1, although both increased support for health policy relative to the control group. At t2, the inoculation message provided resistance to the persuasive industry anti-policy message, whereas narrative message effects decayed but remained significant.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)838-862
Number of pages25
JournalJournal of Communication
Issue number5
StatePublished - Oct 2015


  • Framing
  • Health Communication
  • Inoculation
  • Narrative
  • Persuasion

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Communication
  • Language and Linguistics
  • Linguistics and Language


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