Define Knowledge Translation

The Canadian Institute of Health Research (CIHR) defines knowledge translation as:

“Knowledge translation is the exchange, synthesis and ethically-sound application of knowledge – within a complex system of interactions among researchers and users – to accelerate the capture of the benefits of research for Canadians through improved health, more effective services and products, and a strengthened health care system”

More simply put it is the methods for closing gaps from knowledge to practice. It covers everything from knowledge creation, to knowledge application and dissemination and all the steps in between. It involves all stake holders, especially the end-users, at the various levels. It is moving beyond the production of guidelines and research papers and finding ways to actually use and implement the knowledge gained. Knowledge translation takes into consideration the various stakeholders (e.g. physicians, patients and health care providers) involved, the economic and physical infrastructures available (e.g. the funds required to implement new systems or the equipment available to do so) and the type of knowledge being translated (e.g. new guidelines, conferences and or policy) (Straus et al. ,2009).