Jennifer A. Boyko


Comparison of the Use of Self-Report Surveys and Organizational Documents in Knowledge Translation Research


We compared the same outcome data obtained from two different sources (self-report surveys and organizational documents) in order to examine their relative performance in evaluating the effect of knowledge translation strategies on evidence-informed decision-making. Our data came from a randomized controlled trial that evaluated the impact of knowledge translation strategies on promoting evidence-informed decision-making in public health units across Canada. We found that self-report surveys identified more outcome data than organizational documents; the types of documents that identified the most outcome data were evaluation plans, operational plans, work plans, and evaluation data; the types of documents that identified the least outcome data were meeting minutes, statistics/annual reports, and strategic plans; and evaluation plans, operational plans, and work plans together provide more outcome data than other combinations. Overall, our study suggests that evidence-informed decision-making may be appropriately measured by using multiple data sources in order to compare data across sources and to gain a more accurate representation of the results. Our findings also suggest that if organizational documents are used as a source of data in knowledge translation research, then specific types should be used in order to maximize the likelihood of identifying measures of effectiveness.