by Anneliese Poetz, KT Manager, NeuroDevNet
It’s hard to believe that on August 6, 2014 it will be one year since I started as Manager of the KT Core for NeuroDevNet. The year has flown by, and I am proud to say we have accomplished a lot in what feels like a very short time. It has truly been a team effort, both within the KT Core and with our Knowledge Translation colleagues in York’s KMb Unit.
The infographic below is a visual representation of the services we have provided to researchers, trainees and partners from August 6, 2013 – present.
Brokering: one of the most memorable relationships we brokered was between NeuroDevNet, the Maternal Infant Child and Youth Research Network (MICYRN) and the new Canadian Clinical Trials Coordinating Centre (CCTCC) prior to submission of NeuroDevNet’s renewal application June 11, 2014. By connecting these organizations and having a conversation about possible ways to work together, several concrete activities were identified and included in the application, relating to the development of NeuroDevNet’s IMPROVE Clinical Trials Network.
Events: Tamara Bodnar and Parker Holman are NeuroDevNet trainees who came up with an innovative curriculum for science teachers so kids can do an experiment and see with their own eyes what the effect of alcohol is on a developing organism. The KT Core helped by providing feedback on their event flyer and the event’s evaluation questions, faxing the event flyer to the list of schools provided by Tammy and Parker, and producing a video about the day.
Products: New things since last year are the production of almost 40 ResearchSnapshots which are clear language summaries of NeuroDevNet-supported scientific research, review and vetting of the most current social media guides based on usefulness to researchers/trainees, our youtube channel where you can find KT videos about NeuroDevNet research, and the KT blog you are reading right now! We only have 6 videos posted on our youtube channel, but we reported 11 because we helped advise on the 5 videos created for the Neuroethics Core’s CENDS video series.
Evaluation: When I started, we had David Phipps’ (Executive Director of Research & Innovation at York University, and NeuroDevNet KT Core Lead) Co-Produced Pathway to Impact Framework and an idea of what services we’d offer,
but since then we have worked together to map the services onto the framework. We have subsequently developed indicators
that will help us evaluate our services so we can make decisions about where it is best to allocate our resources to be the most useful. If our quantitative and qualitative indicators are adopted and/or adapted by other NCEs it could also be possible in the future to compare KT Services across NCEs. Interviews are ongoing, and give us qualitative information about KT successes in the Network about the needs of researchers and trainees that we can use to improve our services. We are learning about KT successes such as Angelina Paolozza’s presentation to Adopt Ontario. After explaining her eye-tracking research and helping prospective parents understand more about kids with FASD, all of the parents told Angelina they had changed their minds and would now consider adopting a child with FASD. We will be writing and posting some of these “KT Success stories” online.
Planning: The KT Core reviewed 15 grant applications and provided written feedback on the researcher’s KT Planning strategy for their research, which was often followed by a telephone conversation. We were pleased that most of these applications were successful.
Stakeholder engagement: KT depends on relationships. Period. That’s why the KT Core is growing its networks of stakeholders online (see social media on infographic above), and is gearing up for an in-person stakeholder consultation with diverse stakeholders so we can make sure the work we are doing addresses their information needs (thereby increasing the likelihood it will be useful). We are engaging in conversations using facebook, twitter and LinkedIn and learning a lot about our stakeholders and their information needs. Recently, we distributed the recruitment poster for the FASD Discovery Project’s “Strongest Families” study as well as a resource package for families that don’t qualify to participate. Members of NeuroDevNet can contact the KT Core to ask us to put forth questions to members of our online networks to inform their research, or to disseminate information.
Finally, we’ve refreshed the KT tools section of NeuroDevNet’s website – only the most useful tools and guides for doing KT are there, and are sub-divided into each of the services we provide. We also provide capacity building/training by request as needed. Now that you have seen examples what we have done, contact the KT Core if you are a NeuroDevNet researcher or trainee and ask how we can help maximize the impact of your research.