Assessment and evaluation can help research-practice partnerships improve their work, demonstrate their effectiveness to stakeholders and funders, and provide opportunities to understand how and under what conditions partnerships influence agencies’ actions.
In a field that is still emerging, what we know about evaluating research-practice partnerships is still nascent. However, it is clear that traditional approaches to assessing the impact of a research study, such as the number of publications in peer-reviewed journals, fail to encompass how RPPs affect the participating practice and research organizations. And while studies of RPPs are beginning to emerge, more systematic research is needed. Such work will inform funders who are interested in using research to guide their funding decisions, as well as help RPPs better understand how and whether they are achieving their goals.