How can research organizations more effectively transfer research knowledge to decision makers?

Milbank Q. 2003;81(2):221-48, 171-2. doi: 10.1111/1468-0009.t01-1-00052.


Five questions--What should be transferred to decision makers? To whom should it be transferred? By whom? How? With what effect?--provide an organizing framework for a knowledge transfer strategy. Opportunities for improving how research organizations transfer research knowledge can be found in the differences between the answers suggested by our understanding of the research literature and those provided by research-organization directors asked to describe what they do. In Canada, these opportunities include developing actionable messages for decision makers (only 30 percent of research organizations frequently or always do this), developing knowledge-uptake skills in target audiences and knowledge-transfer skills in research organizations (only 20 to 22 percent frequently or always do this), and evaluating the impact of knowledge-transfer activities (only 8 to 12 percent frequently or always conduct an evaluation). Research funders can help research organizations take advantage of these opportunities.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Canada
  • Decision Making
  • Diffusion of Innovation*
  • Economics, Medical / organization & administration
  • Health Personnel
  • Health Planning Organizations / organization & administration*
  • Health Planning Organizations / statistics & numerical data
  • Health Services Research / organization & administration*
  • Humans
  • Interdisciplinary Communication
  • Organizational Objectives
  • Social Sciences / organization & administration