New report: From knowing to doing: evidence use in the humanitarian sector

20 September, 2021

Hi All,

I have just come across this report and thought it might be of interest to you:

From knowing to doing: evidence use in the humanitarian sector

We find four basic barriers to using research evidence: time pressures; funding constraints; lack of relevance to humanitarian practice; and lack of relevance to humanitarian actors in the Global South. This paper explores common success factors and approaches that support research use, with case studies documenting examples of good practice. Many of these practices are already well known but can be difficult to implement due to political economy constraints in both humanitarian and academic sectors.

We conclude that individual study teams or evidence brokers may struggle to overcome barriers to uptake alone. Coordinated action - driven by research funders, humanitarian donors and humanitarian organisations - is needed to foster an 'ecosystem' for humanitarian evidence use.

The COVID-19 pandemic may provide momentum for this change agenda, having demonstrated the centrality of evidence for effective humanitarian response, leading to the increased participation of humanitarian actors in the Global South.

However, the humanitarian system is also undergoing profound change. The changing landscape will affect evidence production and use in the humanitarian system and should be taken into account when considering how to action the following recommendations.

Best wishes, from,


Dr Caroline De Brún, DipLIS (She/Her/Mrs)

Knowledge & Evidence Specialist - Knowledge & Evidence Specialist - South West

Knowledge & Library Services

Public Health England


HIFA profile: Caroline De Brun is an Information Specialist at Royal Free Hampstead NHS Trust, UK. Professional interests: health information literacy, information skills, knowledge management, outreach librarianship, patient information. She is a member of the HIFA working group on Libraries and Information Services.