Research & Evaluation

We know from existing research that entertainment narratives can have a major influence on people’s knowledge, beliefs, attitudes and behavior. Through our research and evaluation activities, Hollywood, Health & Society aims to better understand—and thereby enhance—the impact of accurate, informative storylines on health, safety and security in TV and film. 

We continually evaluate our entertainment industry outreach model using both formative and summative approaches. We also conduct scientific research to shed light on how entertainment narratives influence the knowledge, attitudes and behavior of individuals and the larger public. Research findings are disseminated to the academic community and beyond through publications in peer-reviewed journals and presentations at professional conferences, guest lectures at USC and other institutions, as well as invited talks at entertainment industry events. 
To learn more about the different types of studies we conduct, visit each section below. 
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Can Transgender Characters Change Attitudes?
New USC Annenberg/HH&S research examines the influence of transgender TV characters and storylines on attitudes toward transgender people and policies. [Learn more]

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What do we see when we watch TV? 
Since 2003, HH&S has conducted a content analysis tracking the frequency and nature of depictions of more than 100 health issues in the most popular primetime TV shows. [Learn more]

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How do TV storylines affect us? 
When a significant storyline on health, safety or security is scheduled to air, HH&S often works with the show to evaluate the impact of this storyline on viewers’ knowledge, attitudes and behavior. [Learn more]

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Research Spotlight: How do Images of Food in Entertainment Affect Us? 
HH&S research examining the image and impact of food in entertainment was previewed as part of the multimedia event Hollywood and Dine at Expo Milano 2015. [Learn more

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HH&S collaborates with faculty, students, scientists, subject matter experts and entertainment industry professionals around the world. [Learn more]

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A printable summary of our research and evaluation projects and publications is available here. For more information about HH&S research activities, contact Erica Rosenthal