National Academies Committee on the Science of Changing Behavioral Health Social Norms

In October 2014 Vicky Rideout was appointed to a standing committee of the National Research Council, part of the National Academies.  The purpose of the Committee is to assist the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration to implement strategies to improve public attitudes and beliefs about mental health and substance abuse disorders.   In the wake of the tragic death of comedian Robin Williams, it is our honor to serve on this Committee and help inform the government's efforts on this critical topic.  Changing social norms is a challenging business; the Committee's task is to explore the scientific research that can help inform our efforts. 


As of 2013, Vicky Rideout was named editor of Reviews and Commentary for the Journal of Children and Media. Here are a few great pieces from the Journal you can access for free online:

A commentary by New America’s Lisa Guernsey about translating research to the public, with a case study about the American Academy of Pediatrics’ recommendations on “Facebook Depression.”

A review of danah boyd’s It’s Complicated and Howard Gardner and Katie Davis’s The App Generation, by June Ahn.

An article about the effects of background TV on child-directed speech by parents, by Tiffany Pempek, Heather Kirkorian, and Dan Anderson.   


October 2014:  Presentation about trends in digital media use among young children, and the ongoing importance of the digital divide, at the Digital Kids Summit. Watch a video of the presentation here 


July 2014:  Panel presentation at the Casual Connect conference in San Francsico.  Read the article "Vicky Rideout Believes in the Power of Media," or watch the panel video here.

June 2014:  Luncheon speaker at the Association of American Publishers conference Content in Context.  


March 2013:  Participated in a panel discussion with Participant Media, The Ad Council, and others at SXSW Interactive in Austin. Topic: Content integration for social causes. Listen to Podcast >

July 2012:  Spoke at The Aspen Institute Children’s Forum, on a panel about video games and health.

May 2012:  Served on The Institute of Medicine’s Committee on Accelerating Progress in Obesity Prevention, in collaboration with HBO’s series The Weight of the NationRead the Committee’s reportwatch the HBO specials, or read the New England Journal of Medicine’s commentary on our Committee’s recommendations.

September, 2012:  Panelist at the Department of Health and Human Services Symposium Technology and Human Services.

A study for Northwestern University about teens' use of digital health information and tools, including medical websites, social media, health-related apps, and wearable devices.  (Spring, 2015)


A study for Common Sense Media on media use among 8- to 18-year-olds. (Fall, 2015)


A study for the Gates Foundation with Kevin Clark (George Mason University) and Kimberly Scott (Arizona State University) about access to, use of, and attitudes about digital technology among African-American youth. (2014-2016)


A study with the Joan Ganz Cooney Center and Vikki Katz (Rutgers), also for the Gates Foundation, about technology use and attitudes in Hispanic families with children in the K-8th grades. (2015)


Alexis R. Lauricella, Ellen Wartella, and Victoria J. Rideout.  “Young children’s screen time: The complex role of parent and child factors,”  Journal of Applied Developmental Psychology 36 (2015) 11-17. DOI:  10.1016/j.appdec.2014.12.001

Elizabeth Moore and Victoria J. Rideout. “The Online Marketing of Food to Children: Is It Just Fun and Games?” Journal of Public Policy & Marketing 26, no. 2 (2007): 202-220. Note: Article received the Thomas C. Kinnear/Journal of Public Policy & Marketing Award recognizing the article that “makes the most significant contribution to the understanding of marketing and public policy issues within the most recent three-year period (2006-2008).”


Ellen Wartella, Aletha C. Huston, Victoria Rideout and Michael Robb. “Studying Media Effects on Children: Improving Methods and Measures,” American Behavioral Scientist 52 (2009): 1111-1114.


Elizabeth A. Vandewater, Victoria J. Rideout, Ellen A. Wartella, Xuan Huang, June H. Lee and Mi-suk Shim.“Digital Childhood: Electronic Media and Technology Use Among Infants, Toddlers, and Preschoolers.” Pediatrics 119, no. 5 (2007): e1006-e1015.


Caroline R. Richardson, Paul J. Resnick, Derek L. Hansen, Holly A. Derry, and Victoria J. Rideout. “Does Pornography-Blocking Software Block Access to Health Information on the Internet?” Journal of the American Medical Association 288, no. 22 (2002): 2887-2894.


Ellen A. Wartella, Elizabeth A. Vandewater, and Victoria J. Rideout. “Introduction: Electronic Media Use in the Lives of Infants, Toddlers, and Preschoolers.”American Behavioral Scientist 48, no. 5 (2005): 501-504.


Sandra L. Calvert, Victoria J. Rideout, Jennifer L. Woolard, Rachel F. Barr, and Gabrielle A. Strouse. “Age, Ethnicity, and Socioeconomic Patterns in Early Computer Use: A National Survey.” American Behavioral Scientist 48, no. 5 (2005) 590-607.


Elizabeth A. Vadewater, David S. Bickham, June H. Lee, Hope M. Cummings, Ellen A. Wartella, and Victoria J. Rideout. “When the Television is Always On: Heavy Television Exposure and Young Children’s Development.” American Behavioral Scientist 48, no. 5 (2005): 562-577.


Mollyann Brodie, Ursula Foehr, Vicky Rideout, Neal Baer, Carolyn Miller, Rebecca Flournoy, and Drew Altman. “Communicating Health Information Through the Entertainment Media.” Health Affairs 20, no. 1 (2001): 192-199.


March 2, 2004: The Rise of Obesity in Children. U.S. Senate Commerce, Science and Transportation Committee's Subcommittee on Competition, Foreign Commerce, and Infrastructure.



Aspen Institute Children’s Forum, July, 2012:  Media and Child Health (Panelist)


Advertising Week, October, 2011: Content Integration and Social Change, Sparking Action (Moderator).


Department of Health and Human Services Symposium, Technology and Human Services, September, 2012 (Panelist).

Consumer Electronics Show, January, 2010. The Crystal Ball: Technology in the Life of a Child, 2040.


Banff World Television Festival, June, 2007. Do You Want Fries With That? Junk Food Advertising and Kids’ Programming.


FCC/U.S. Senate Task Force on Media and Childhood Obesity, May, 2007. Food Advertising to Children. (speaker)


Association of Health Care Journalists Annual Conference, March, 2007. Luncheon Roundtable: Hollywood and Health – Entertainment Media as a Health Information Source.


Aspen Institute/Common Sense Media, Beyond Primetime forum, February, 2007.
Keeping Kids Healthy in a 24/7 Media Environment.


American Association for the Advancement of Science Annual Conference, February, 2007. Television Dramas: Education, Entertainment, or Both? (speaker)


CDC National Health Promotion Conference, September, 2006. The Changing Media Landscape: Using New Technologies and Tools to Improve Communication.


Stanford University Medical School, Resident Education in Advocacy and Community Health (REACH) Lecture Series, October, 2005. Media and children’s health. (speaker)


Federal Trade Commission, Perspectives on Marketing, Self-Regulation, and Childhood Obesity, July, 2005. Current Media Efforts to Foster Healthier Choices for Children: The challenges of communicating healthy eating messages to youth through the media


Food & Drug Administration, Away From Home Foods: Opportunities for Preventing Weight Gain and Obesity, July, 2005. An Overview of Marketing Away-From-Home Foods. (speaker)


Youth Marketing Mega-Event, April, 2005. Youth Obesity: Public Opinion on the Role and Responsibility of the Food and Beverage Industry. (speaker)


Institute of Medicine, Committee on Food Marketing and the Diets of Children and Youth, January, 2005. Marketing Strategies that Foster Healthy Food and Beverage Choices in Children and Youth.


National Association of Broadcasters Annual Conference, 2005. Plenary session: Programming and Responsibility.


Grantmakers for Children, Youth & Families Annual Conference, October, 2004. Plenary speaker: New Communications Technologies, Their Impact on Children and Young People, and Implications for Social Policy and Philanthropy. (speaker)


Fox Broadcasting Company Annual Retreat, June, 2004. Teens, Sex and TV: Results From Recent Research. (speaker)


Fox Entertainment Group, Producing Content in the New Millennium: Balancing Creativity with Responsibility, February, 2004. What Responsibility Does the Entertainment Community Have to its Audience?


Grantmakers for Effective Organizations, March 2004. Using Media for Effective Public Education.


Federal Trade Commission, Marketing Violence to Children: A Workshop on Industry Self-Regulation, October, 2003. Dialogue Among Industry, Consumer and Research Groups – Discussion of Rating and Labeling Systems.


Federal Communications Commission En Banc Hearing on Public Interest Obligations of TV Broadcast Licensees, October, 2000. Protecting Children from the Effects of Sexually Explicit or Violent Programming.