The Oxford Biblical Studies Online and Oxford Islamic Studies Online have retired. Content you previously purchased on Oxford Biblical Studies Online or Oxford Islamic Studies Online has now moved to Oxford Reference, Oxford Handbooks Online, Oxford Scholarship Online, or What Everyone Needs to Know®. For information on how to continue to view articles visit the subscriber services page.

Related Content

More Like This

Show all results sharing these subjects:

  • Medicine and health
  • Public Health and Epidemiology


Show Summary Details


opinion leader

Quick Reference

An individual who helps to shape or set public opinion by virtue of prominence in public life, whether in a religious setting, politics, business or commerce, the mass media, the performing arts, or elsewhere. Opinion leaders may influence society and current affairs and events for good or ill, according to the nature of the message they seek to convey or the behavior they demonstrate for others to imitate. The words and actions of opinion leaders sometimes significantly affect public health, for instance, when media stars exhibit high-risk behavior.

Reference entries