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Paper Submitted: AIDS and Behavior

Theory, Measurement and Hard Times: Some issues for HIV/AIDS research
Friedman, Samuel R
Sandoval, Milagros
Mateu-Gelabert, Pedro
Rossi, Diana
Gwadz, Marya
Dombrowski, Kirk
Smyrnov, Pavlo
Vasylyeva, Tetyana
Pouget, Enrique R
Perlman, David

Abstract
Economic and political instability and related “big events” are widespread throughout the globe. Although they sometimes lead to epidemic HIV outbreaks, sometimes they do not—and we do not understand why. Current behavioural theories do not adequately address these processes, and thus cannot provide optimal guidance for effective intervention. Based in part on a critique of our prior “pathways” model of big events, we suggest that Cultural-Historical Activity Theory (CHAT) may provide a useful framework for HIV research in this area. Using CHAT concepts, we also suggest a number of areas in which new measures should be developed to make such research possible.

Key Words: Big events, hard times, cultural historical activity theory, theory, HIV, measurement