International evaluation expert joins health research strategy team

Dr. Stephen Hanney, an international expert in assessing the impact of health research, has joined the BC health research strategy team as an expert advisor to finalize an evaluation framework for the strategy.

Along with Dr. Martin Buxton, Hanney is recognized for co-creating a “payback framework” to evaluate a range of health research programs in the United Kingdom funded by the public sector and medical research charities. His work has also focused on such topics as the use of research in decision-making, the organization of health research systems, and policy-making for higher education and research systems.

Hanney’s expert advice will assist the BC health research strategy team in measuring progress towards the strategy’s goals. Development of an evaluation framework will provide a roadmap for monitoring and assessing the impact of actions related to the strategy’s three main directions.

The evaluation framework will be developed through a highly iterative process. A scoping phase is already underway, including consultations with key stakeholders whose work could inform and be informed by an evaluation framework for the strategy.

The BC health research strategy aims to support greater coherence and a common understanding of priorities among BC’s health research community. It is intended to capture collective work underway, catalyze new actions to fill identified gaps, measure progress at a system level, and provide feedback to facilitate positive and productive system-level changes.

Many of the actions in the strategy are already underway through various inter-connected provincial initiatives and the related work of individual organizations that make up the BC health research enterprise. For example, the BC SUPPORT Unit and the development of BC Academic Health Sciences Network are major drivers of progress related to the research strategy.

A strategy document, Directions for Health Research in BC, was published in fall 2014 to outline the directions and related actions required to build, maintain, and improve the health research system in BC. The BC health research strategy is facilitated by the Michael Smith Foundation for Health Research and developed with input from researchers, health-care providers, decision makers and patient representatives from across BC.

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