10 Framing Recommendations


Use the GPS Navigation metaphor to explain how public health’s data expertise can help other sectors move toward innovative solutions

The Goal & The Challenge

When the goal is… to build understanding among other sectors about how they might utilize the extensive data expertise of public health professionals to drive needed improvements on the ground…

The challenge is… they’re starting from a very narrow perception of what this expertise entails. Professionals in other sectors generally think of public health data as sets of descriptive statistics that can help diagnose problems. They have little understanding of the ways data can be analyzed and creatively engaged with to advance solutions, and even less understanding of how they can draw on the data training and analytical skills of public health experts to get where they need to go.

Before Framing

When You Say…Public health professionals have a breadth as well as depth of proficiency with data, which makes us valuable collaborative partners for other sectors. Our knowledge and experience with collecting, analyzing, sharing, and using data enables us to meet a host of sector needs.

They Think…I know that public health experts can do things like track morbidity rates and report on disease outbreaks and other health-related problems, but my work has nothing to do with that. It’s not clear how public health data or expertise could be useful to me.

Framing can help

Framing can help explain how public health’s data expertise works, including that it can function as a flexible and adaptable tool for other sectors to engage with interactively. Effective communications illustrate that data, in the skilled hands of public health experts and with the essential input of sector professionals, can spark cutting-edge ideas, revolutionize on-the-ground practices, and implement state-of-the-art improvements.

An effective reframe would look something like this:

Much like a GPS system, public health professionals draw on data to help other sectors plan the best way forward, navigating gridlock when needed and continually responding to new input. We help guide communities to where they want to be by distilling the information that helps them visualize the path ahead, and innovate new visions for what destinations are possible.

Remember, the reframe isn’t a ready-made talking point. It’s a sample iteration that models the framing recommendation in action.

More Examples

Housing Sector

An effective reframe would look something like this:
Advancements are possible with the right information and analytical tools. Our sectors can collaborate and draw on data that merges essential information about housing and health to map the road ahead toward safe and affordable homes.


Avoid depicting public health professionals as “drivers” when using the GPS Navigation metaphor; this concept is all about collaboration and shared goals rather than putting public health in the lead.

Education Sector

An effective reframe would look something like this:
We rely on various metrics, indicators, and other data to navigate strategically from where we are now towards improved outcomes for students. Data-sharing partnerships enabled by public health experts make for a smoother journey by ensuring the route options are as accurate and up to date as possible.


Use the GPS Navigation metaphor to explain that public health’s data skills help identify multiple possibilities, rather than indicate the best route or any single route.

Health Systems Sector

An effective reframe would look something like this:
Let’s mobilize our two sectors’ shared capacity for using data to chart new paths, steer clear of potential barriers, drive greater community benefits, and arrive at positive health outcomes.


Use the GPS Navigation metaphor to show how data can be used as a tool for implementing solutions, beyond just diagnosing problems.

Business Sector

An effective reframe would look something like this:
Quality data and sophisticated analysis support smart business decisions. Public health’s data expertise can guide critical decision-making processes forward by helping business professionals visualize the possibilities for improving productivity and talent retention through a focus on community health.


The potential to solve problems through innovative data applications is a key selling point for partnerships between business and public health. Use the GPS Navigation metaphor to highlight both sectors’ forward-thinking and ingenuity.