Areas of Research Interest: an opportunity for synthesis to shine?
In this seminar, the speaker will discuss experiences, lessons learned, and next steps for research in synthesis and how this might look different for different departments and problems.
Since 2017, government departments in the UK have been asked to publish lists of their evidence needs, called “Areas of Research Interest”. Over 1500 have now been published and are publicly available, but mostly little was done with them. In 2019, the speaker was seconded to the civil service to work out what could usefully be done with these ARIs. Working closely with science advisors, public research funders, intermediaries, and universities, the speaker and their team ran knowledge mobilisation exercises and tested different approaches to improve how evidence could inform policy. In this presentation, the speaker will discuss experiences, lessons learned, and next steps for research. In particular, the role for synthesis, and how this might look different for different departments and problems – and how we might tackle the evidence gaps together.
Kathryn Oliver, Professor of Evidence and Policy, LSHTM
Kathryn Oliver is Professor of Evidence and Policy. Since 2019 she has been seconded to the Government Office for Science to support evidence use across government through the Areas of Research Interest. She is co-Director of Transforming Evidence with Annette Boaz, an initiative which aims to share lessons about evidence production and use, to run research into these topics, and to create opportunities to connect the diverse research, funding, practitioner and policy communities with a shared interest in this area.