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Act on Data

The Act on Data (AOD) Group brings together epidemiology, evaluation, and program staff to improve access to and use of data for program planning and decision making. AOD Core Group members serve to ensure annual objects on Work Plan are met.

Kristi Pier, MHS, MCHES

Maryland Department of Mental Health and Hygiene


Act on Data Systems Thinking Tools and Resources 

“To make sense of it all, we have to be thinking in systems. Let’s focus on our energies on building the […] Systems Thinking capacity that’s needed to improve the way the world works.” Barry Richmond

One long time goal of the Act on Data Workgroup has been to build members’ capacity to apply systems thinking to important issues currently being tackled by state partners. Over the past few years, Act on Data has supported the development of tools to assist State Health Department staff and their partners to use systems thinking to plan and implement their work. Find these tools and resources below. 


Finding Leverage – The Power of Systems Thinking with Chris Soderquist (Video)

This 6-minute video introduces the concepts of systems thinking using chronic disease prevention and control as an example. This video complements the “upstreamest” movement and the need to transform and reform our health system. This video is intended for people new to systems thinking and can be used with state health department partners to introduce systems thinking as a framework to plan, discuss, and find leverage for chronic disease prevention and control. 

Improving Chronic Disease Coordination Systems Thinking Project - 2013-2014

Systems thinking learning tools were developed with state member input. Four states were trained to use tools and implemented them with partners summer 2014. Tools are being refined based on state member and partner input. Draft tools and training webinars are available for all states. View draft tools and training webinars. 

Act on Data Adaptive Leadership Training - 2012

The Act on Data Workgroup sponsored a 4-part webinar series on "adaptive leadership”--building knowledge and skills to solve challenges and interconnected problems.

View the Flyer for more information about course. 

Indicators for Social Determinants of Health Promotion

Addressing social determinants of health (SDOH) is a key priority listed in the strategic plan for the Diabetes Council. The Act on Data Workgroup sought to address DPCP competencies around understanding and becoming more competent in collecting data for SDOHs as they develop effective programs. The Act on Data workgroup identified 12 SDOH data indicators appropriate to DPCPs, and piloted collection and use of the indicators.

This Guidance Document is a summary of the pilot, the pros and cons of each indicator, and a tool to be used by DPCPs as they continue to make programs decisions which address SDOH.


Systems Dynamic Modeling Presentation

Presentation: Making Sense of Systems Dynamic Modeling, April 11, 2011 Division of Diabetes Translation Pre-conference Session, Minneapolis, MN.


Calls and Webinars

The calls/webinars are open to all staff working in chronic disease prevention and control programs. These calls focus on efforts highlighting the use of data to guide program planning and decision making.

View past call and webinar information.