Information Seeking Experiences of Canadian Pharmaceutical Policy Makers

Greyson, Devon and Morgan, Steven and Cunningham, Colleen Information Seeking Experiences of Canadian Pharmaceutical Policy Makers., 2010 . In 'Challenging the Boundaries' 16th Annual Qualitative Health Research Conference, Vancouver, Canada, October 3-5, 2010. (In Press) [Conference poster]


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English abstract

Background Research-informed public policy is often articulated as an ideal. Yet, “evidence-based policy making” has also been critiqued for not fully taking into account the context in which policy makers actually work. This exploratory study investigates the work-related information seeking experiences of key informants engaged in pharmaceutical policy making in Canada. Methods As part of a broader research prioritysetting process, we conducted semi-structured interviews with a purposive sample of 15 Canadian pharmaceutical policy decision makers. Interviews were audio-recorded, transcribed and coded using NVivo 8. We used descriptive qualitative analysis influenced by grounded theory methods We compared our results with Leckie, Pettigrew & Sylvain’s General Model of Information Seeking of Professionals to create a model specific to our study population. Pharmaceutical policy makers need information for their work, and their information seeking is not dissimilar to that of other professionals. Results Approaches to seeking were diverse, and may reflect a status hierarchy in which access to resources is unequally distributed. Sources used also appeared to indicate levels of status. Affective outcomes were commonly disappointment, desire for a single go-to source, and resignation to making do without evidence. Time pressures were a concern across respondents, and influenced seeking actions as well as outcomes. Conclusions Specific types and time-sensitivity of needs, as well as a lack of established sources, create affective outcomes that point to areas of improvement for information sharing and knowledge translation. In the absence of a dedicated, independent source for rapid-response policy research, Canadian pharmaceutical policy makers will continue to satisfice with available resources, and barriers to evidence-informed policy will persist.

Item type: Conference poster
Keywords: information seeking, information needs, information behavior, evidence based policy, evidence informed policy, pharmaceutical policy makers, health policy, knowledge translation, knowledge exchange, KT
Subjects: B. Information use and sociology of information > BG. Information dissemination and diffusion.
B. Information use and sociology of information > BA. Use and impact of information.
B. Information use and sociology of information > BH. Information needs and information requirements analysis.
Depositing user: Devon Greyson
Date deposited: 19 Oct 2010
Last modified: 02 Oct 2014 11:56


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