Utilization of social science research Results of a pilot study among Australian sociologists and criminologists
Researchers, as well as decision-makers and practitioners, often wonder what becomes of the results of research in the social sciences. At present in Australia, we know very little on the subject. This article reports results from a survey of academic sociologists and criminologists about the utilization of their research. It tests an empirical model that derives its dependent and independent variables from prior studies on knowledge utilization, and defines research utilization as a six-stage cumulative process. Results indicate that while there are decreasing reported levels of research utilization across the stages by practitioners and professionals, academic sociologists and criminologists report their research is more often used conceptually. Variables that distinguished respondents who report high levels of utilization were investments in linkage and exchange mechanisms. The discussion is placed in a broader context related to measuring the impact of social research and the factors that inhibit and facilitate this process.
Journal of sociology
Sociological Methodology and Research Methods