SAPS-RA-MCS 2021 - Science avec et pour la société – Recherche Action – Médiation et communication scientifiques

Knowledge brokering for the reduction of social inequalities in health in Ile-de-France – CourtISS

Submission summary

The COVID-19 pandemic and the exacerbation of social inequalities in health in France, particularly in the Île-de-France region, reaffirm the urgency of strengthening the link between science and society. The interactions between these two worlds are neither obvious nor automatic. Decision-making to change practices based on research results is difficult to implement. However, the science of science utilization, which is in full expansion, makes it possible to propose an innovative intervention: knowledge brokering, where a person/organization has a mediation function between the world of research and the world of action to support decision-making based on scientific knowledge. Knowledge brokers are not only intermediaries who transmit information from one community to another, but also mediators who select, transform, and adapt new knowledge for decision-making.
While mediation, particularly in the field of culture, is not new in France, there are still few studied experiences of knowledge brokering in the field of health. To our knowledge, there is no knowledge brokerage initiative in France within an institution such as a Regional Health Agency (ARS). Such a project would therefore represent a novel experience in France. Moreover, although social inequities in health have been known for decades, they have rarely been the subject of coherent intersectoral interventions and policies. In this context, our ambition is to carry out an innovative action research project within the ARS of Île-de-France (ARS-IdF), a dense and heterogeneous network committed to the fight against social inequities.
The objective is to test a knowledge-brokering intervention to improve the integration of scientific knowledge in the ARS-IdF's (public) health strategy so that the Agency, and its partners, can better act in favor of social inequities in health reduction. We will conduct action research on this intervention. A qualitative evaluation will be organized throughout the action-research to draw lessons from it. This project, which is in line with our respective action and research work, was co-constructed in response to this call, and meets a scientific need and a need expressed by the ARS-IdF itself. On the strategic level, the implementation of the project will be coordinated by a steering committee composed of researchers, members of the ARS-IdF and field workers. Technically, the brokering intervention will be under the responsibility of the ARS-IdF and its evaluation under the one of the researchers (Université de Paris - Institut de recherche pour le développement / Université de Montréal). All these activities will be organized through a participatory and inclusive process where the latest evidence on the effectiveness of partnerships will be considered. We hope that the results will be used throughout the project by the Public health department of the ARS-IdF, and not only after the process is completed. At the end of the project, we will deploy knowledge transfer activities to a wide audience of decision-makers and stakeholders to share the results and facilitate their use: deliberative workshops, website, research and policy notes, blog, articles, and scientific communications.

Project coordinator

Monsieur Valéry Ridde (Centre population et développement)

The author of this summary is the project coordinator, who is responsible for the content of this summary. The ANR declines any responsibility as for its contents.


CEPED Centre population et développement

Help of the ANR 79,968 euros
Beginning and duration of the scientific project: - 24 Months

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