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Call for papers - Learning from failure in knowledge exchange

Other - Deadline : 10/28/2022


Thea Cook

Subtitle : The editors of Evidence & Policy are seeking submissions for a special issue.

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Abstract deadline: 28 October 2022

Rationale and scope:

While the evidence base on successful practices in knowledge exchange is rapidly growing, much less attention has been given in the academic literature to documenting and reflecting on failures in trying to exchange different types of evidence between academics, practice partners and policy makers. However, learning from failures is just as important, if not more crucial, than celebrating successes.

Learn more about Evidence & Policy

List of potential topics:

We are inviting papers for a special issue in Evidence & Policy that provides practical examples of knowledge exchange failures and how participants dealt with these failures. This can includes updates on methodological and theoretical developments in documenting and reflecting on failures in knowledge exchange, and critical commentaries on the research impact agenda. We actively encourage joint submissions between academic researchers and practitioners to reflect, from each other’s perspectives, on experienced failures in knowledge exchange.

Potential questions that papers could address are:

- Where and how does failure occur in knowledge exchange?
- Who notices them and what is the impact for producers, users and exchangers of knowledge?
- How to respond to failures, how can we prepare for them and learn from mistakes?
- How can we research failed knowledge exchange practices and projects to document and reflect on the processes and distil learning from them to improve these practices?
-What frameworks and theoretical concepts could help practitioners, policy makers and researchers to reflect on failures and identify learning from them that could be adopted in future knowledge exchange processes?
-What is needed to create a ‘permission to fail’ culture in evidence producing, using and sharing organisations?

Where to submit:

Please submit a 250-500 words abstract for your papers to

Timescales for the special issue:

- 28 October 2022: Deadline for abstract submissions.
- 1 November 2022: Selection of abstracts to develop into full papers, invite authors to submit full papers.
- 23 December 2022: Full first draft of papers submitted to editors.
- 3 March 2023: Return of reviewers’ comments to authors.
- 28 April 2023: Second revised draft of papers submitted to editors.
- 26 May 2023: Return of final comments to authors.
- 9 June 2023: Final versions of papers submitted to editors.
- 30 June 2023: Final Submission of Special Issue to Journal editors.


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