ProjectsEvidence Use
Evidence Use

Contact: James Thomas

As well as being a centre for systematic review methods, the EPPI Centre is also a centre for the study of research use. Synthesising research evidence is necessary to understand what we know from research and ‘how we know it’. But there is then the further crucial process of research being made available, interpreted and applied in decision making in policy, practice and everyday life.

Access to syntheses of research evidence

Reviews published by the EPPI Centre are freely available through our Evidence Library.

Guidance on research use

As part of our commitment to capacity building activities to help ensure that those who want and need research can find, understand and use it effectively, we have produced a number of introductory guides for postgraduate researchers and academic staff to assist understanding of terms such as ‘research impact’ and ‘knowledge exchange’ and the key issues within them. 

Supporting research use

Potential users of research such as policy makers and professional practitioners may not be fully aware of how research might benefit them. We therefore offer a Research Advisory Service (RSA) to enable users of research to consider whether research might be helpful to their decision making, and, if so, in what way what type of research would meet that need.

Studying research use

A growing area of interest is the study of research use in policy and practice, including the processes, structures and systems (both formal and informal) that shape this use. We believe that research can assist decision making; in which case, how best to do this is itself an important research question. In other words, we need to be ‘evidence informed’ about how we use research evidence!  Our work in this area includes: the European Commission funded ‘Evidence Informed Policy and Practice in Education in Europe’ (EIPPEE) project; the Science of Using Science Review and the ESRC funded study of the UK What Works Centres, and an education Endowment Foundation funded project on enabling research use in schools in England.

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