A research impact model for work and health

Publication type
Journal article
Van Eerd D, Moser C, Saunders R
Date published
2021 Jan 01
American Journal of Industrial Medicine
Open Access?

Research organizations, governments and funding agencies are increasingly interested in the impact of research beyond academia. While a growing literature describes research impacts in healthcare and health services, little has focused on occupational health and safety research. This article describes a research impact model that has been in use for over a decade. The model was developed to track and describe the impact of research conducted by a mid-sized institute that focuses on work and health. Model development was informed by existing models, with the goal of contextualizing the institute's case studies describing three types of research impact: evidence of the diffusion of research; evidence of research informing decision-making; and evidence of societal impact. A logic model describes research actions and outcomes, as well as key audiences and knowledge transfer approaches. A unique element is its indication of the level of difficulty in determining types of impact. The model compares well with current research impact models developed or used in healthcare and health services research, and it has been useful in guiding a mid-sized research organization's process for tracking and describing the impact of its research. It may be useful to other small and mid-sized research organizations that focus on workplace health and safety