Knowledge translation for public health in low- and middle- income countries: a critical interpretive synthesis

Glob Health Res Policy. 2018 Oct 22:3:29. doi: 10.1186/s41256-018-0084-9. eCollection 2018.

Abstract

Background: Effective knowledge translation allows the optimisation of access to and utilisation of research knowledge in order to inform and enhance public health policy and practice. In low- and middle- income countries, there are substantial complexities that affect the way in which research can be utilised for public health action. This review attempts to draw out concepts in the literature that contribute to defining some of the complexities and contextual factors that influence knowledge translation for public health in low- and middle- income countries.

Methods: A Critical Interpretive Synthesis was undertaken, a method of analysis which allows a critical review of a wide range of heterogeneous evidence, through incorporating systematic review methods with qualitative enquiry techniques. A search for peer-reviewed articles published between 2000 and 2016 on the topic of knowledge translation for public health in low- and middle - income countries was carried out, and 85 articles were reviewed and analysed using this method.

Results: Four main concepts were identified: 1) tension between 'global' and 'local' health research, 2) complexities in creating and accessing evidence, 3) contextualising knowledge translation strategies for low- and middle- income countries, and 4) the unique role of non-government organisations in the knowledge translation process.

Conclusion: This method of review has enabled the identification of key concepts that may inform practice or further research in the field of knowledge translation in low- and middle- income countries.

Keywords: Critical interpretive synthesis; Knowledge translation; Low- and middle- income countries; Public health.

Publication types

  • Review