Witten and Hammond (2010) What becomes of social scinces knowledge....pdf

Of transfer or uptake to report many would have been

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of transfer or uptake to report many would have been conducting unfunded research and research at various stages of completion. Non- applied theoretical and disciplinary-related Table 2 Categories of knowledge transfer or research uptake in main and secondary research areas. Category Main (%) Secondary (%) Research contributing to organizational decision-making 15.6 2.6 Research-based presentations delivered to potential users 13.5 3.7 Research-based documents given/available to potential users 12.6 5.8 Consultation between researcher and potential user 6.9 1.5 Table 3 Research end-users groups. Category Percentage Central government agencies 31 NGO, iwi and other community organizations 15 Education (students, teachers and institutions) 9 Regional and local government agencies 8 Business sector 6 Researchers and research institutes 4 International government agencies 4 Professional associations 4 Law-related 4 What becomes of social science knowledge 9 Downloaded by [University of Western Sydney Ward] at 15:15 11 February 2014
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research would comprise a quantum of all social science research, fields in which transfer and uptake may be less tangible. The impor- tance of valuing this type of social science research that does not have direct application in the social, and other, policy sectors was a position taken by many survey respondents. It is difficult to identify studies, either within the social sciences or in other scientific fields, to which the findings of this study can be compared. Of interest is a 2003 survey of grant holders in the biomedical, clinical and public health fields undertaken by the Health Re- search Council (Health Research Council 2004a, 2004b). Social scientists would make up approximately half of the public health grant holders. Recipients of 89% of the public health contracts indicated that peer-reviewed publications had arisen from the contract, 78% said the research had influenced policy and 67% that it had informed practice. These figures are very high compared to the examples of knowledge transfer indicated in the National Survey of Social Scientists 2006. However, the samples are far from comparable in terms of seniority and research experience. The HRC sample were successful grant holders, many of whom would be senior academics with sub- stantial research records, whereas the social science sample included lecturers and research- ers many of whom would have had very little research experience. Comparison with other academic fields is problematic as the nature of research outputs and dissemination practices and opportunities are variable across fields. For example an Australian study by Bourke, Butler and Biglia (1996) cited in Katz (1999) found social scien- tists publish 60% of their research in journal articles or conference papers whereas 85% of the research outputs for natural scientists were published through these media.
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