Young, R.A., Logan, C., Lovato, C.Y., Moffat, B. and Shoveller, J.A., University of British Columbia, Canada
In response to skin cancer as an emerging public health problem in North America, this study examined sun protection and behavior in the sun such as sunbathing in families with adolescents. The question this study addressed is: How are specific goals and actions that pertain to sun protection and "behavior in the sun" conceptualized and acted on in relation to joint family health promotion and other projects? Using a grounded theory method, a parent and an adolescent from each of 20 families living in the Southern Interior of British Columbia were interviewed about their attitudes and behavior about sunbathing and sun protection. Initial videotape interviews were followed by a reflective interview in which each participant saw and commented on his or her initial interview. The data were analyzed using traditional grounded theory procedures. The emerging constructs led to an interpretation of outdoor activities and sun protection as two distinct yet complementary and competing health promotion projects in families. The specific concepts that emerged in the analysis including contextualizing, assessing risk, differentiating between process and outcome, judging competency, and "fitting the picture," contribute to the organization and regulation of outdoor activities and sun protection as family projects. The data support the understanding of project as joint goal-directed action over time as the basis on which these behaviors are organized in families. Implications for health promotion and sun protection in families are drawn.