Naugle, D.A. and Hornik, R.C. (2014) Systematic review of the effectiveness of mass media interventions for child survival in low- and middle-income countries. Journal of Health Communication, 19, pp. 190-215.Link to Source
This systematic review covers a wide and diverse group of studies. The authors undertook a fairly comprehensive search and supplementary material reports an impressive amount of detail about each included study, including a range of intervention characteristics, study design and analysis methods, and effect sizes. However, the review has some important limitations. The methods of screening and coding studies are not reported, and the authors are not completely transparent about how they came to decisions on the quality of included studies. The major limitation is that the authors did not undertake a meta-analysis, even though effect sizes were calculated and reported for each study and there appears to be sufficient scope and study overlap to do so. Instead, the authors use vote counting and talk very generally about results of included studies without clear synthesis methods and only limited mention of the effect sizes calculated. Finally, the authors only analysed the moderate to high quality studies and did not discuss if there were differences between these two groups.
In sum, this review will be very useful for researchers looking for a descriptive summary of the research, however some additional information and analysis would result in this study being truly useful for policymakers and practitioners.