My Journey From Bench to Broker / Du lab de sciences au courtage de connaissances : mon itinéraire

The e-book, Career Journeys: Leaders share different career journeys in research administration (PDF), is one of six fabulous publications in the Canadian Association of Research Administrators (CARA) bookstore and presents the diverse career journeys of 11 different research administrators. It is a great resource for those wanting to learn about

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The Who, What and How of Research Impact / L’impact de la recherche : le qui, le quoi et le comment

David Phipps has just returned from three weeks in the UK for his Fellowship funded by the Association of Commonwealth Universities. Working with his Fellowship partner, Julie Bayley (Coventry University), he became immersed in research impacts mediated through public engagement, commercialization, entrepreneurship, internationalization and knowledge exchange. This affords the opportunity

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KMb in the City / MdC dans la ville

On October 31, 2015, We The City featured speakers from community, municipalities and universities including SFU, UNBC, Queen's, Ryerson, UofT, Mt Royal, OCADU, McGill, U Calgary, Dalhousie, UBC and David Phipps from York University. The event featured about 80 participants, three cities and four buses. We The City was a

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David Phipps named a Fellow of the Association of Commonwealth Universities

Congratulations to David Phipps, RIR-York, who was recently awarded a Fellowship from the Association of Commonwealth Universities (ACU). The following story first appeared in York University's YFile on September 18, 2015 and is reposted here with permission. [caption id="attachment_7725" align="alignright" width="224"] David Phipps[/caption] David Phipps, executive director research & innovation services, has

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Wisdom About Community Campus Collaborations From Those Who Live Them / Sagesse des intervenants dans les collaborations entre l’université et la communauté

In one week I facilitated workshops on supporting awesome community campus collaborations with two very different non-academic audiences. The similarities are interesting, the differences intriguing. The method was fantastic. Dans la même semaine, j’ai animé des ateliers sur les moyens de produire de remarquables collaborations entre l’université et la communauté, auprès de

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Two York Research Administrators Receive National Awards

Congratulations to David Phipps (RIR-York) on receiving the Research Management Excellence Award from the Canadian Association of Research Administrators (CARA). This story was first published on YFile on May 26, 2015 and is reposted here with permission.  [caption id="attachment_8084" align="alignleft" width="276"] David Phipps and Angela Zeno[/caption] The Canadian Association of Research Administrators (CARA) has

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David Phipps and York U’s Knowledge Mobilization Unit Named Canada’s Biggest Influencers

The following was originally posted in YFile, York Univesity's Daily News, on February 6, 2013 and is reposted here with permission. [caption id="attachment_1062" align="alignright" width="135"] David Phipps[/caption] David Phipps, executive director, Research & Innovation Services, which includes York University’s Knowledge Mobilization Unit (KMb), has been named the most influential knowledge broker in

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Knowledge Mobilization Documents Best Practices for Clear Language Research Summaries

The following was originally posted in YFile, York University's Daily News, on October 23, 2012 and is reposted here with permission. When it comes to conveying the important research to the broader community, clear language summaries are the best choice, this according to a new article published in the peer-reviewed journal, Scholarly & Research Communications. Led by

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Knowledge Mobilisers: Putting Research into Practice (and Policy)

The following was originally posted on The Guardian’s Higher Education Network blog on October 9, 2012 and is reposted here with permission.

Maximising the impact of research on society depends on universities brokering the right partnerships with public policy, says David Phipps – and Canada is leading the way.

Good research should have a ripple effect on society and knowledge mobilisation can push it out.

Earlier this year on the Higher Education Network, I introduced knowledge mobilisation as a university-based process that connects academic social sciences and humanities research to non-academic decision makers to inform decisions about public policy and professional practice, enhance social innovation and develop sustainable solutions to social, environmental, economic and cultural challenges.

I then reflected on its past – the roots of knowledge mobilisation as we now understand it. In this third installment, I return to the present to see how York University in Toronto is supporting collaborations between researchers and partner to maximise the impact of research on society.

We started York University’s knowledge mobilisation practice by trying to push out existing research results to find “receptors” and soon realised that we needed more interactive methods of closing the gap that exists between research within a higher education context and the policy and practice which could use it. Researchers and their partners need to find a middle ground in which to collaborate so that research not only meets the academic standards of scholarship but is also relevant to non-academic partners.

Today York University’s knowledge mobilisation unit uses a suite of services available to faculty and students from all disciplines across the university. Our knowledge mobilisation staff help faculty and partners identify and develop research collaborations through meetings support, student interns and the use of social media as a connecting channel. We have recently published a report on our full range of services.

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Using Research to Influence Family Services and Policies

The following was first published on Centre for Research on Families and Relationships’ (CRFR) blog and is reposted here with permission.
CRFR co-director Sarah Morton and colleagues Sandra Nutley (Director of the Research Unit for Research Utilisation, www.ruru.ac.uk) and David Phipps (Director of Research Servics & Knowledge Exchange at York University, Canada) offer seven lessons, and associated challenges, to improve how research is used in policy and practice in a recent article in the new journal Families Societies and Relationships.
  1. Set realistic ambitions and expectations: Research is one form of knowledge that policy makers and practitioners will be using, but it is rare for research to have the definitive word.
  2. Improve research strategies to ensure they address relevant issues and expand our knowledge base rather than unwittingly replicate existing studies. Reviewing research and evaluation processes helps to ensure that research responds to relevant issues and address the main knowledge gaps.
  3. Shape – as well as respond to – policy and practice debates: Take up opportunities to influence policy and practice debates when they appear, – rather than waiting for opportunities to open up, work with advocacy organisations to raise issues of concern and get debates going.
  4. Create dialogue around research by pulling together different perspectives: Research on its own does not create change, but it can influence it. Encourage dialogues between people that recognises research needs to interact with practice experience and tacit knowledge.
  5. Recognise the role of dedicated knowledge broker organisations and networks: There are increasing numbers of knowledge broker organisations and networks who can help to facilitate the creation, sharing and application of research-based knowledge.
  6. Target multiple audiences to increase the reach and impact of your message: Disseminate research findings into wider political and public debate, alongside more targeted approaches. This might be targeting influential people, participating in media debates, speaking at policy and practice conferences and seminars or responding to consultation processes.
  7. Evaluate, learn, improve: Knowledge exchange is still an immature discipline; only through improved evaluation and learning will our understanding of effective strategies develop over time.
Don’t forget that challenges remain:
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David Phipps and York’s KMb Unit named Canada’s biggest influencers

The following article appeared in York University’s YFile on September 28, 2011 and is reposted with permission.

David Phipps, director of York’s Research Services and Knowledge Exchange, has been named the most influential knowledge broker in Canada, according to a report by Knowledge Mobilization Works, a consulting and training company based in Ottawa.

The Canadian Knowledge Mobilization 100, a survey run by Knowledge Mobilization Works, asked respondents to rank the biggest influences of their knowledge mobilization practice. Phipps, who leads York’s Knowledge Mobilization Unit and ResearchImpact-RéseauImpactRecherche, Canada’s knowledge mobilization network, topped the list.

Left: David Phipps

Also mentioned among the top influencers in Canada were Peter Levesque (Knowledge Mobilization Works), Melanie Barwick (Hospital for Sick Children), Ben Levin (Ontario Institute for Studies in Education) and Gary Myers (KMbeing.com).  The survey collected responses from Jan. 5 to June 15, and results were released by Knowledge Mobilization Works on Monday

“Knowledge mobilization is a key element of York’s research outreach strategy,” said Robert Haché, York’s vice-president research & innovation. “Through David’s efforts and leadership, York’s excellent reputation as a leading knowledge mobilization university in Canada continues to be strengthened. This recognition by his peers is well deserved.”

York piloted institutional knowledge mobilization in 2005 under a grant from the Canadian Institutes of Health Research and the Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council of Canada. Since then, York has grown its knowledge mobilization collaboration with the University of Victoria to include the other four ResearchImpact-RéseauImpactRecherche universities: Memorial University of Newfoundland & Labrador, Université du Québec à Montréal, University of Guelph and University of Saskatchewan. York also works closely with the United Way of York Region to deliver knowledge mobilization services to the York Region community, municipal and regional agencies.

Knowledge mobilization is a suite of services that connect university research and expertise to government and community agencies so that research can help these organizations make better informed decisions about public policy and social services. Knowledge mobilization is a process that results in social innovation.

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