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Table 3 Framework for assessing country-level efforts to link research to action *

From: Capturing lessons learned from evidence-to-policy initiatives through structured reflection



General climate

• Funders, researchers, universities and other research institutions, research users, and intermediary groups support or place value on efforts to link research to action

Production of research

• Efforts to engage in priority-setting processes, produce and use scoping reviews, systematic reviews, and single studies when needed

• Efforts to develop the capacity of researchers to prepare evidence briefs and other forms of research synthesis

Activities used to link research evidence to action

Push efforts

• Efforts to prepare and communicate evidence briefs to research users

• Efforts to communicate research findings, which may include identifying actionable messages, fine-tuning messages for different user groups, using evidence-informed strategies to support action based on the messages, and evaluating their impact

• Efforts to enhance the capacity of researchers to develop and execute evidence-informed push efforts and evaluate their capacity

Efforts to facilitate user-pull

• Efforts to provide access to research (e.g., rapid-response units and ‘one-stop shopping’ to meet users’ needs for high quality research)

• Efforts by researchers to develop research users’ capacity to use research

User-pull efforts

• Efforts to facilitate research use, such as efforts to assess and enhance the capacity of research users to acquire, assess, adapt, and apply research

• Efforts to develop structures and processes to help research users to acquire, assess, adapt and apply research; to combine research with other types of information as inputs to decision-making; and to promote the use of research evidence in decision-making

Exchange efforts

• Deliberative processes (such as policy dialogues) and meaningful partnerships between researchers and policymakers to jointly ask and answer relevant questions

• Efforts to enhance the capacity of researchers and research users to engage in mutually beneficial partnerships


• Supporting and participating in rigorous evaluations of efforts to link research to action, outcomes, impacts, and unanticipated consequences

• Evaluating sustainability (institutionalizing KTPs, governance, structure, function resources, etc.), lessons learned, and opportunities for improvement

  1. * Adapted from Lavis et al. [13].