Monitoring National Physical Activity Policy using GoPA! Policy Inventory: A Global Challenge

Symposium C20


  • Bojana Klepac Victoria University
  • Andrea Ramírez Varela Universidad de los Andes
  • Michael Pratt University of California San Diego
  • Željko Pedišić Victoria University
  • Adrian E. Bauman University of Sydney



Physical Activity, Surveillance, Policy, National, Global


Purpose: To present the progress, findings and lessons learned from the implementation of The Global Observatory for Physical Activity (GoPA!) Policy Inventory, put the results in perspective with international efforts since 1990 and propose future steps for GoPA! global physical activity (PA) policy monitoring, by taking into account current evidence.

Description: Physical inactivity accounts for approximately 5 million deaths per year globally, but its high prevalence remains to be effectively addressed by national governments. A plethora of initiatives led by international organisations, national governments and non-governmental organisations, researchers, and physical activity promoters have been implemented to turn PA into a public health priority. In 2015, the GoPA! was launched to monitor progress on PA surveillance, policy and research globally. In 2017, the GoPA! started developing a PA Policy Inventory to enable collecting comparable data on PA policy worldwide. In 2017, the instrument was piloted in 12 countries. In 2019, after three rounds of open discussion with policy experts and consultations with the GoPA! Country Contacts, the GoPA! Policy Inventory, version 3.0 was developed. The GoPA! Policy Inventory collects information related to: national PA policy and its implementation, comprehensiveness, and effectiveness; national PA surveillance/monitoring; quantifiable national targets for PA; national PA recommendations; and ministries with an active role in PA promotion. In this symposium, we will address key questions about PA policy monitoring, by describing the lessons learned during the development of the GoPA! Physical Activity Inventory and its use in the assessment of national policies globally. We will put these experiences in perspective with different policy monitoring initiatives since 1990 and more current ones, such as The Global Action Plan for Physical Activity. We will examine whether it is feasible to track PA policy at the global and national levels, what are the role and contribution the GoPA! has had in PA policy monitoring, and how the policy indicators may be used for advocacy and guidance in the coming years.

Agenda and Presenters:

Chair: Bojana Klepac, Victoria University, Melbourne, Australia. Introduction to the symposium.

Discussant: Dr. Adrian Bauman, University of Sydney, Australia.

Presenter 1: Dr. Andrea Ramírez Varela, Universidad de los Andes, Bogotá, Colombia. Title: Introduction to the GoPA! Policy Inventory and the methods of its implementation.

Presenter 2: Bojana Klepac, Victoria University, Melbourne, Australia. Title: Main findings and lessons learned from the implementation of the GoPA! Policy Inventory.

Presenter 3: Dr. Michael Pratt, University of California San Diego School of Medicine UCSD. Title: GoPA! Policy Inventory in the context of the development and monitoring of PA policy since 1990 to today.

Presenter 4: Dr. Željko Pedišić, Victoria University, Melbourne, Australia. Title: What are the future steps for global PA policy monitoring with the GoPA! Policy Inventory?

Discussion Q&A

Results: Data on national PA policies were collected using GoPA! Policy Inventory. The responses were obtained from 76 countries. A comprehensive analysis and comparison of national PA policies in low-, middle, and high-income countries was conducted.

Conclusions: The GoPA! National Policy Inventory contributes to collecting PA policy data worldwide and is aligned with previous and current international policy monitoring initiatives. Targeting examples of good practice and providing a broad international assessment of PA policies will serve as a good foundation for future policy improvements and recommendations.



How to Cite

Klepac Pogmilovic, B., Ramírez Varela, A., Pratt, M., Pedišić, Željko, & Bauman, A. (2021). Monitoring National Physical Activity Policy using GoPA! Policy Inventory: A Global Challenge: Symposium C20. The Health & Fitness Journal of Canada, 14(3).

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