Multilingual European thesaurus on health promotion
264 pages

Multilingual European thesaurus on health promotion


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264 pages
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Information - Documentation
Health policy
Medical and biological research



Publié par
Nombre de lectures 118
Langue Serbian
Poids de l'ouvrage 8 Mo


European thesaurus
on health promotion
Deutsch — ENGLISH — Français — Nederlands
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Employment & social affairs
European Commission Multilingual
European thesaurus
on health promotion
Employment & social affairs
Public health
European Commission
Directorate-General for Employment, Industrial Relations
and Social Affairs
Unit V/F.3
Manuscript completed in December 1996 IUHPE/EURO project 'Follow-up project on the development of a multilingual thesaurus'
Editors: Rodney Amis, Maria-Antonia Bertrand Baschwitz, Guillemette Chevaillier, Laura
Dorst, Heidrun Zimmerman
Project staff: Ms MARE. Beliën, regional director IUHPE/EURO; Ms H.M. Stroomer (15
December 1995-15 October 1996), J. Oosterbeek (16 October-15 December 1996), project
Layout and production: J. de Vries, P.C. Bron, MJ. Smit
This publication has been produced with the financial support of the European
Commission. It does not necessarily represent the Commission's official
Neither the Commission of the European Communities nor any person acting in the
name of then is to be held responsible for the use made of the information
contained in this publication.
A great deal of additional information on the European Union is available on the Internet.
It can be accessed through the Europa server (
Cataloguing data can be found at the end of this publication.
Luxembourg: Office for Official Publications of the European Communities, 1998
ISBN 92-828-2616-3
© European Communities, 1998
Reproduction is authorised provided the source is acknowledged.
Printed in Belgium Table of contents
It is extremely important that there is a common, uniform use of terms in the fields of health
promotion and health education throughout Europe. Such shared language will stimulate and
support the exchange of information in the field. Clark & Leroy (1995) stress this observation in
their article on developing a research agenda in health education. In fact they acknowledge the
important contribution to the US progress in health education of the work on the taxonomy of
health education terms in the past. To cite: "clearly to push a field of endeavour forward there
must be a common language".
In this new media era such a terminology base will - in the form of a multilingual thesaurus -
make international databases more easily retrievable and national databases available for experts
from other countries. It will promote new international collaborating projects and facilitate
international comparisons. It will have a stimulating effect on the development of health
promotion and health education in countries that lag behind.
We believe this project is an excellent example of good international cooperation. We are
impressed by the commitment of information specialists and their organizations in working on
this project. It is a necessary condition for making a complicated international project such a
success. Moreover it is an excellent basis for implementation.
As IUPHE we highly appreciate the support of the European Commission in our shared efforts to
improve communication and collaboration in the fields of health promotion and health education
at a European level. We acknowledge the fact that through EC support the development of a
European multilingual thesaurus has become possible.
We are convinced that through the valuable participation of the experts from France, England,
Scotland, Germany, Austria, the Netherlands, Belgium (Flanders and Wallony), and advisors from
Italy, Spain, IUHPE/EURO and the European Commission this thesaurus will set the standard at a
European level. A European thesaurus that specifically covers core terminology in the field of
health promotion and health education, and covers most fields in equal respect. A thesaurus that
has been built not on literary translation, but that values the notion of different concepts in
different languages in one common international tool.
Of course having a standard and implementing it are not the same. We are grateful that already
in this stage our colleagues from main institutions in the UK, France, the Netherlands and
Germany have announced putting this thesaurus into practice at the national level. The
contributors as a whole expressed their intention to implement this thesaurus on the interna­
tional level. We would like to emphasise that this is the first version of this multilingual
thesaurus. We are pleased that fellow institutes in Southern Europe and Scandinavia have
started similar projects with the support of the European Commission. We shall endeavour to
arrive at a joint product together with these parties: a multilingual thesaurus in eleven European
Here lies a major challenge for all of us, in the European setting, to make this thesaurus the
necessary effective terminology standard that will push our work forward.
Hans Hagendoorn
Vice president IUHPE
Region Europe
This multilingual thesaurus covers the field of health promotion and it comprises terms in
English, French, German and Dutch. It has been compiled by information managers in the field of
health promotion and education from several European countries.
The aim of the Thesaurus is to improve communication and collaboration in the field of health
promotion and health education at European level.
Health promotion and education is a broad field whereas health topics may differ in the various
countries. Established services in one country may not correspond with services in another. The
thesaurus is a macrothesaurus, generally covering topics, services and country-specific
concepts. Parts of national thesauri can be added as microthesauri for national use.
Two methods have been used in the construction of the thesaurus. The ab initio construction is
combined with the translations of an existing thesaurus, the thesaurus of the former Dutch
Centre for Health Promotion and Health Education. Feedback to the original thesaurus is
permitted, i.e. the terms and structure may be modified if necessary.
The English language was used as the source language which means that English served as a
starting point for translating preferred terms into equivalent terms in the target languages, i.e.
German, French and Dutch. All four languages have equal status, i.e. every preferred term in
one of the languages has a preferred term in each of the other languages. The non-preferred
terms are not directly equivalent.
The International Standard ISO 2788 : Documentation - Guidelines for the establishment and
development of monolingual thesauri (1986) and the International Standard ISO 5964:
Documentation - Guidelines for the establishment and development for multilingual thesauri
(1985) have been applied during the construction process.
The thesaurus is monohierarchical with some polyhierarchical tendencies. This means that most
of the preferred terms have one generic term, but some do have more than one; this is only the
case when it was considered absolutely necessary to have a term under more than one subject
heading for retrieval purposes.
This multilingual thesaurus is available from IUHPE/EURO and the European Commission DG
V/F/3, free of charge. A digital version will be available on the IUHPE/EURO Web-site
Four language groups were established, each group consisting of a language co-ordinator
supported by one or two terminology experts on a national level. Thee co-ordinators
formed the Management Committee, which was responsible for compiling the thesaurus (there
was no language co-ordinator for the French language). The scope of the thesaurus was first
determined by defining the macrostructure. Each language group was then assigned a part of
the macrostructure in order to find the concepts needed for describing key issues in health
education and promotion, and patient education. The Management Committee discussed the
concepts proposed and decided on the final terminology in the source language. The language
groups determined the equivalent and non-preferred terms in the target languages.
In the last stage hierarchical and associative relationships were constructed and scope notes on
the use of the preferred terms were written.
The language groups consisted of librarians, information managers, specialised in the field of
health education and promotion, and terminology.
The following persons participated in this project:
Ms. Hester Stroomer, Netherlands Institute for Health Promotion and Disease prevention,
project co-ordinator
Ms. Jolanda Oosterbeek, Netherlands Institute for Health Promotion and Disease Prevention,
acting project co-ordinator.
For the English language group:
Mr. Rodney Amis, Health Education Authority, language co-ordinator
Ms. Margaret Forrest, Health education Board for Scotland
Mr. Robert Gann, the Help for Health Trust.
For the French language group:
Ms. Guillemette Chevaillier, Banque de Données Santé Publique ENSP
Ms. Maria-Antonia Bertrand Baschwitz, Unité d'Education pour la Santé.
For the German language group:
Ms Heidrun Zimmerman-Rüther, Bundeszentrale für gesundheitliche Aufklärung, language co­
Ms Christiane Süverkrüp, Deutsche Zentralbibliothek für Medizin.
For the Dutch language group:
Ms. Laura Dorst, Netherlands Institute for Health Promotion and Disease Prevention,
language co-ordinator
Ms. Maria van der Sommen, Netherlands Institute of Care and Welfare
Ms. Monique Vanormelingen, Flemish Institute for Health Promotion.

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