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Developing communities of practice to support the implementation of research into clinical practice

Louise Thomson (Nottinghamshire, Derbyshire and Lincolnshire CLAHRC, University of Nottingham, Nottingham, UK)
Justine Schneider (Nottinghamshire, Derbyshire and Lincolnshire CLAHRC, University of Nottingham, Nottingham, UK)
Nicola Wright (Nottinghamshire, Derbyshire and Lincolnshire CLAHRC, University of Nottingham, Nottingham, UK)

Leadership in Health Services

ISSN: 1751-1879

Article publication date: 25 January 2013

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Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to review the role of social networks in the translation of research into practice, propose a broader model of communities of practice (CoPs) involving practitioners, researchers and service users, and describe a case report which adopts this broader model.

Design/methodology/approach

Using the evidence on both knowledge transfer and the use of CoPs to share practice, this work presents an approach to supporting and developing CoPs around the specific context of an applied research programme in health and social care.

Findings

The development of CoPs across the professional and organisational boundaries of researchers, practitioners, and service users has the potential to enhance the translation of evidence into practice. It requires bringing together the right people and providing a supportive infrastructure to facilitate exchanges. Methods of engaging and involving the different stakeholder groups vary according to the specific context and pre‐existing networks, but developing closer working relationships and sharing common values is an important step in this process. Within the applied health research partnership of the Collaboration for Leadership in Applied Health Research and Care for Nottinghamshire, Derbyshire and Lincolnshire (CLAHRC‐NDL), the role of Diffusion Fellows, Engagement Fellows and CLAHRC Associates provides a way of engaging with its diverse stakeholders.

Originality/value

This paper builds on existing evidence about CoPs and the role of social networks in knowledge transfer.

Keywords

Citation

Thomson, L., Schneider, J. and Wright, N. (2013), "Developing communities of practice to support the implementation of research into clinical practice", Leadership in Health Services, Vol. 26 No. 1, pp. 20-33. https://doi.org/10.1108/17511871311291705

Publisher

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Emerald Group Publishing Limited

Copyright © 2013, Emerald Group Publishing Limited

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