A systematic scoping review evaluating sugar-sweetened beverage taxation from a systems perspective.
Nature food 2023
PubMed ID : 37857862
Systems thinking can reveal surprising, counterintuitive or unintended reactions to population health interventions (PHIs), yet this lens has rarely been applied to sugar-sweetened beverage (SSB) taxation. Using a systematic scoping review approach, we identified 329 papers concerning SSB taxation, of which 45 considered influences and impacts of SSB taxation jointly, involving methodological approaches that may prove promising for operationalizing a systems informed approach to PHI evaluation. Influences and impacts concerning SSB taxation may be cyclically linked, and studies that consider both enable us to identify implications beyond a predicted linear effect. Only three studies explicitly used systems thinking informed methods. Finally, we developed an illustrative, feedback-oriented conceptual framework, emphasizing the processes that could result in an SSB tax being increased, maintained, eroded or repealed over time. Such a framework could be used to synthesize evidence from non-systems informed evaluations, leading to novel research questions and further policy development.