PhD defence L. (Lei) Yang


Prof.dr. J. Jansz


Dr. Y. Mao

Thursday 12 Dec 2019, 13:30 - 15:00
PhD defence
Senate Hall
Erasmus Building
Campus Woudestein
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On Thursday 12 December 2019, L. Yang will defend her PhD dissertation, entitled: ‘Health Communication Research Among the Chinese Hui Ethnic Minority Group in Shenyang City’.

The Chinese Hui are the third largest minority group in China, where the Han are the dominant majority (Gustafsson & Sai, 2014). Historically, the Hui have embraced their own distinct culture based on their Muslim ancestry, but they are now also influenced by that of the Han (Dillon, 2013). Nonetheless, issues relating to the Hui’s health are still unique, as they have a higher incidence of cardiovascular risk factors (CVRFs) (J. Wu et al., 2016). Improving this situation from a health communication perspective would require the promotion of a healthy lifestyle, including diet and exercise (J. Wu et al., 2016). The aim of this dissertation is to contribute to the development of health communication in China. The research is embedded in the culture-centered approach (CCA) to health communication (Dutta, 2007a, 2008; Gao, Dutta, & Okoror, 2016). More specifically, the studies described contribute to improving what is known about health communication targeted at the Chinese Hui ethnic minority group. The research was guided by the following questions:

1.            How do the Hui ethnic minority people access and evaluate health information from different sources, in particular with respect to CVDs?

2.            What needs do the Hui have concerning CVD-related health information from different sources?

3.            What kinds of CVD-related health content do television and the internet convey in China?

4.            How does the CVD-related health content on television health programs and WeChat official accounts target the Hui minority group?

These questions were answered using an online survey, focus groups and content analyses of television programs and WeChat articles. The results of the different studies revealed that the Hui rely on different sources for advice about CVDs, with the internet and television most prominent. They trust and prefer the information provided by health organizations, doctors or healthcare providers, while that delivered by religious organizations and leaders is trusted the least. The Hui in our corpus want credible and professional information from different sources and mediated health communication programs that are targeted at them; the research’s examination of the health programs on Chinese television and the articles posted on WeChat official accounts revealed that both convey different kinds of CVD-related health information, but none of this is specifically targeted at the Hui. These results are relevant for health information promoters concerned with Chinese minorities, and can help them to disseminate advice on CVDs to the Hui more effectively.

The public defence will take place at the Senatehall, 1st floor of the Erasmus Building, Campus Woudestein. The ceremony will begin exactly at 13.30 hrs. In light of the solemn nature of the ceremony, we recommend that you do not take children under the age of 6 to the first part of the ceremony.

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