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Open Access Lessons from coordinating a knowledge-exchange network for connecting research, policy and practice

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This article explores ten lessons learnt by the UK knowledge-exchange network, the Adaptation and Resilience in the Context of Change (ARCC). The lessons signpost the importance of 'soft skills' required for the development of effective knowledge exchange and indicate the need for a broad definition of knowledge exchange that allows for a flexible approach to meet the diverse and changing needs of research, policy and practice. Such flexibility will also encompass collaborative research conducted with business, consultancy, training, start-ups and commercialization components. The ten lessons here will be valuable to: networks and individual academics undertaking knowledge exchange to achieve research excellence and impact with non-academic audiences; those undertaking public engagement and stakeholder engagement with research; and government policymakers and research managers tasked with shaping and implementing the UK's proposed Knowledge Exchange Framework (KEF).

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Keywords: COMMUNICATION; ENGAGEMENT; IMPACT; INTANGIBLES; KNOWLEDGE EXCHANGE; NON-ACADEMIC AUDIENCES; OUTREACH; SOFT SKILLS

Document Type: Research Article

Publication date: September 1, 2019

More about this publication?
  • Engagement with research goes further than participation in it. Engaged individuals and communities initiate research, advise, challenge or collaborate with researchers. Their involvement is always active and they have a crucial influence on the conduct of the research.

    Research for All is a peer-reviewed journal focusing on research that involves universities and communities, services or industries working together. Contributors and readers are from both inside and outside of higher education. They include researchers, policymakers, managers, practitioners, community-based organizations, schools, businesses and the intermediaries who bring these people together. The journal highlights the potential in active public engagement for robust academic study, for the development of involved communities, and for the impact of research. It explores engagement with different groups and their cultures, and features theoretical and empirical analysis alongside authoritative commentary to explore a range of themes that are key to engaged research including the development of reciprocal relationships, sector-specific communication and participatory action research. The journal is co-sponsored by the UCL Institute of Education and the National Co-ordinating Centre for Public Engagement.

    The journal welcomes relevant articles. See the publication homepage for details, or contact [email protected]

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