A practice-based tool for engaging stakeholders in future research: A synthesis of current practices

Jeanne Marie Guise, Christen O'Haire, Melissa McPheeters, Carole Most, Lia Labrant, Kathy Lee, Erika K. Barth Cottrell, Elaine Graham

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

72 Scopus citations


Objective: A major goal of patient-centered outcomes and comparative effectiveness research is to increase the involvement of stakeholders throughout the research process to provide relevant and immediately actionable information. In this report, we review the current practices for engaging stakeholders in prioritizing research. Study Design and Setting: To evaluate the range of approaches to stakeholder engagement, we reviewed the relevant literature and conducted semistructured interviews with (1) leading research organizations in the United States, Canada, and the United Kingdom; and (2) eight Evidence-based Practice Centers that engage stakeholders in comparative effectiveness research. Results: We identified 56 articles related to stakeholder engagement in research prioritization. Studies and research organizations interviewed frequently used mixed methods approaches combining in-person venues with structured ranking or voting processes such as Delphi. EPCs similarly used group web/conference calls combined with Delphi ranking or voting. Research organizations reported difficulties engaging the public and policy makers, and EPCs reported challenges engaging federal stakeholders. Conclusion: Explicit and consistent use of terminology about stakeholders was absent. In-person techniques were useful to generate ideas and clarify issues, and quantitative methods were important in the prioritization of research. Recommendations for effective stakeholder engagement and a reporting checklist were developed from the accumulation of findings.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)666-674
Number of pages9
JournalJournal of Clinical Epidemiology
Issue number6
StatePublished - Jun 2013


  • Comparative effectiveness research
  • Consumer participation
  • Delphi technique
  • Evidence-based medicine
  • Qualitative research
  • Research design

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Epidemiology


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