Two male doctors and a female doctor hold a discussion at a conference table.

Implementation Science

Studying the determinants of and strategies to improve the uptake of evidence-based interventions into routine practice

Evidence-based interventions are a crucial component to fighting a wide array of global crises. However, the integration of these interventions into different settings, such as community-based organizations, health care institutions, or schools, is often overlooked. Using a variety of research approaches, we work to improve our understanding of how to catalyze the uptake of evidence-based interventions into different settings, especially within public health. Recent studies include interventions designed to prevent opioid overdose deaths, prevent cancer, prevent and/or treat HIV, and motivate behavioral change.

For example, overdose education and naloxone distribution (OEND) programs are a helpful and cost-effective approach to prevent opioid overdose deaths. However, recent research has demonstrated that this evidence-based intervention is highly underused in the United States, especially in regions with the highest numbers of deaths due to overdose. As a scientific discipline, implementation science offers a systematic approach to understanding why OEND program implementation is lagging behind the need for such programs, what strategies can be used to improve OEND implementation in different settings and the mechanisms and adaptations of those strategies in different contexts.

With the multidisciplinary field of implementation science, our team seeks to understand the barriers and facilitators to successfully implementing evidence-based interventions. Our research focuses on finding strategies that can improve implementation efforts—and learning how strategies work and can be adapted to different settings.

Our experts conduct rigorous implementation science studies, using a mixture of quantitative and qualitative approaches. We work collaboratively with key stakeholders, including implementers, community members, government agencies, advocacy organizations and other researchers, to develop approaches that are contextually and culturally appropriate. With these efforts, we aim to catalyze the use of more evidence-based interventions into real-world practice.