Receptive contexts and the role of knowledge management in evidence-based practice

Iestyn Williams

in Evidence, policy and practice

Published by Policy Press

Published in print June 2011 | ISBN: 9781847423191
Published online March 2012 | e-ISBN: 9781447302254 | DOI:
Receptive contexts and the role of knowledge management in evidence-based practice

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This chapter introduces concepts associated with the field of knowledge management and considers the applicability and implications of these for our understanding of evidence-based improvement in health and social care. It considers models of evidence-into-practice from an organisational perspective and provides a discussion of how strategies for improving knowledge management might lead to greater adoption of innovation and best practice in health and social care. It argues that the focus hitherto on the generation of policy and practice evidence should be augmented with investment into the creation of contexts that are receptive to change and innovation. Without the latter, the former is redundant. Thus, notions of the ‘learning organisation’, ‘absorptive capacity’ and inter-organisational ‘connectedness’ are introduced. Finally, strategies such as network and leadership development and creation of a knowledge ‘infrastructure’ are put forward as an antidote to crude prescriptions for the mechanistic dissemination of evidence.

Keywords: knowledge management; evidence-based practice; health care; social care; evidence-into-practice

Chapter.  6846 words. 

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