Rounding Up the Associations: How Perceptions of Addiction are Recruited

Nat Kendall-Taylor, PhD

Cultural Models, Addiction, Framing Metaphor

FrameWorks Institute, August 2010

The plurality and ambiguity of Albertans' answers to fundamental questions about addiction, such as what it is and what causes it, illustrate the challenge of communicating on this issue. The following report suggests that the way these questions are asked and answered are watershed events for strategic communications on this topic. The specific assumptions used to answer and reason about these questions determine, shape, and even bind the way citizens and policy makers alike are able to think about other critical questions around addiction, such as who is responsible and what can and should be done to address the problem. Corresponding presentation documents and materials coming soon.