The materials in this section aim to answer questions about how laws are impacting public health and why. The materials lie along a spectrum that speaks to the strength of the evidence, or how thoroughly researchers have been able to evaluate whether a law is improving public health or not.
Some materials, such as those in the Theory, Practice and Evidence series, represent foundational studies where we are only just beginning to know or understand how the law is impacting public health. As you move farther along the spectrum to LawAtlas Maps and Data, and Research Results, we are beginning to gain more and more knowledge about the state of the law and its effects. Critical Opportunities synthesize the existing evidence and offer policy suggestions and changes to the law based on what we know. Finally, our strongest form of evidence, Evidence Briefs, definitively state whether or not a law is effective or ineffective at meeting the public health goals as it was intended to.