Implementation research training materials

Implementation research (IR) is the systematic approach to understanding and addressing barriers to effective and quality implementation of health interventions, strategies and policies. It is demand-driven, with research questions framed on the basis of needs identified by relevant stakeholders/implementers working together in the health system.

TDR provides a continuum of training materials on implementation research.

Massive open online course (MOOC) on implementation research - an illustration of different concepts.

With the help of invited experts from regions across the globe, TDR is producing this interactive tool to introduce people to the concepts of this type of research. It is valuable for public health researchers and decision makers, academic and research institutions and public health practitioners. Fourteen experts guide participants and provide valuable case studies over 5 modules:

  • Module 1: What is implementation research?
  • Module 2 : Context and settings
  • Module 3 : Implementation research strategies
  • Module 4 : Outcomes in implementation research
  • Module 5: Implementation research in practice ( Seasonal malaria chemoprevention in South Senegal)

Available early 2018.

Implementation research toolkit

This toolkit provides deeper learning on implementation research, helping people learn a standard process that can lead to results that can be compared across regions and countries. It is designed to help identify system bottlenecks and the stakeholders to be involved in the process, formulate appropriate research questions, conduct the research and develop a plan for implementing the study results.

Principles of Implementation Research (PIR) course

This provides an overview to implementation research. It serves as an introduction to fundamental terms, concepts, and principles of IR and their application. It explains the basic components of implementation research frameworks, as well as key constraints to implementation. Additionally, the course provides knowledge on common methods and conduct of IR, ethics and quality assurance in IR as well as skills for community engagement and stakeholder analysis. It also explores key research communication skills required for disseminating implementation research findings and scale up of intervention. This has been developed by the School of Public Health at the University of Ghana, with assistance from the network of the TDR supported Regional Training Centres.

The course covers five modules:

  • Module 1: Introduction to implementation research
  • Module 2: Methods in implementation research
  • Module 3: Ethics and quality assurance in implementation research
  • Module 4: Community and stakeholders engagement
  • Module 5: Communication, dissemination and scale-up

Available in early 2018.

Ethics in implementation research

This is a 2 and a half day course covering ethical considerations in planning, conducting and reporting IR. It is designed for programme managers, public health specialists in the ministry of health or national research institutes, staff in the health care system and research ethics committee members. It helps participants to:

  • recognise the importance of ethical principles in the conduct of implementation research;
  • strengthen their skills in the implementation of these ethical principles in planning, conducting and reporting IR;
  • assume responsibility for and apply these skills to their daily work.

Available in early 2018.

Guidance for publishing IR results

Implementation research utilises a range of different research designs, so existing reporting guidelines have only partially covered the need for guidance. TDR worked with the World Health Organization (WHO) and the Alliance for Health Policy & Systems Research (AHPSR) to develop new reporting guidelines. They are designed to improve the quality of reports on these types of research, and in due course the quality of the research itself.