Practical Guidance for Involving Stakeholders in Health Research

Published in: Journal of GeneralInternal Medicine (2018). doi: 10.1007/s11606-018-4738-6

Posted on RAND.org on December 27, 2018

by Thomas W. Concannon, Sean Grant, Vivian Welch, Jennifer Petkovic, Joseph Selby, Sally Crowe, Anneliese Synnot, Regina Greer-Smith, Evan Mayo-Wilson, Ellen Tambor, Peter Tugwell

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Stakeholder engagement is increasingly common in health research, with protocols for engaging multiple stakeholder groups becoming normative in patient-centered outcomes research. Previous work has focused on identifying relevant stakeholder groups with whom to work and on working with stakeholders in evidence implementation. This paper draws on the expertise of a team from four countries — Canada, Australia, the UK, and the USA — to provide researchers with practical guidance for carrying out multi-stakeholder-engaged projects: we present a list of questions to assist in selecting appropriate roles and modes of engagement; we introduce a matrix to help summarize engagement activities; and we provide a list of online resources. This guidance, matrix, and list of resources can assist researchers to consider more systematically which stakeholder groups to involve, in what study roles, and by what modes of engagement. By documenting how stakeholders are paired up with specific roles, the matrix also provides a potential structure for evaluating the impact of stakeholder engagement.

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