Centre for Employment Innovation’s Key Learnings (2017 – 2022)

Knowledge Mobilization

Knowledge Mobilization
What is Knowledge Mobilization (KMb)?
  • Knowledge mobilization is a process that facilitates research being translated and actioned by relevant stakeholders. 
  • It is a term used to define the connection between academic research and organizations, people, and government to improve programming and inform policy change. 
  • It is the mutual and complementary flow and uptake of research knowledge between researchers, knowledge brokers and knowledge users.
  • KMb involves making evidence accessible, understandable, and useful for knowledge users. 
  • It is the process of adapting knowledge to increase research uptake and inform decisions, while also connecting researchers and their work to communities outside of academia.
    What are some examples of KMb?
    • Outputs: newsletter, fact sheets, infographics, FAQs, handbooks, toolkit, e-newsletters, social media posts, blogs, websites, video presentations 
    • Events: workshops, symposium, training session, conference, presentation, panel.
    What are some key considerations for planning KMb?
    • Who? 
      • Who is your target audience?  
      • Who is involved in mobilizing this knowledge? 
      • Who can act as the KMb team? (Community contacts, Communities of learning, informal).  
      • What? 
        • What knowledge will you be sharing? 
        • What are your goals (e.g., influence policy action, motivate, engage)?  
        • What can your target audience do with the information you give them? 
        • What strategies do you think will help you to reach your intended knowledge users best? 
        • What will the role of the KMb team be? (Level of integration, expectations).  
          • Why? 
            • Why does this research matter to your target audience? 
            • How?
              • How will you mobilize this knowledge? 
              • How will you evaluate you KMb efforts? 
                What is Collaborative Knowledge Mobilization (CKMb)?

                The Collaborative Knowledge Mobilization (CKMb) approach was developed for a collaborative (community-based research, action research) approach to knowledge/evidence creation.   

                • The purpose of the CKMb approach is to work collaboratively with potential knowledge user/community partners to support the distribution and use of new applicable knowledge/evidence to help support positive social impact . 
                • The CKMb approach offers a robust ‘user friendly’ set of activities for researchers and program evaluators.
                • CKMb strives to address the power dynamic between academic researchers and program staff and those whom the research and new knowledge is meant to support. 
                • The CKMb adopts intentional strategies to bring new knowledge/evidence to the context in which it is applicable to encourage meaningful use. 
                  • How?
                    • CKMb integrates KMb actions before, during, and after the knowledge creation process.
                      What are the five key phases of the CKMb approach?
                      1. Invitation & Planning: the purpose of this phase is to: 
                        • Intentionally consider KMb, decide how to integrate the KMb team into knowledge creation planning process.
                        • To identify strategies to help develop capacity of target audiences for new knowledge.
                      2. Data Gathering & Analysis:
                        • During this phase, primary data will be collected whether through research methods and shared back with KMb team.
                      3. Design:
                        • This phase mainly involves developing a dissemination plan which is adapted to relevant contexts and needs of knowledge users.
                      4. Dissemination Activities:
                        • The purpose of this phase is the implementation of the dissemination plan and review of the overall experience of the CKMb process.
                        • This phase represents the ultimate purpose of the CKMb, to support meaningful transfer of knowledge-to-knowledge users.
                      5. Debrief & Evaluation:
                        • The focus of this phase is on both the impact of the KMb activities on the knowledge receivers and on the experiences of the KMb team. 
                                    What are some important considerations for CKMb?
                                    • An important consideration for the CKMb approach is the level of integration and engagement of the KMb team. 
                                    • The level of integration and level of participation of KMb team needs to be identified and clearly articulated in the beginning of the project. 

                                    What are the three essential ingredients for CKMb?
                                      • Collaborative Knowledge creation approach  
                                      • Relational posture  
                                      • Cultural and contextual awareness  

                                      For more information on CKMb, check out this Facilitator Guide created by CEI Impact and Innovation Officer, Joel Murphy. The facilitator guide offers practical instructions for relevant stakeholders on how to apply the CKMb approach. 

                                      Knowledge Mobilization and Community Learning Groups
                                      What are Community Learning Groups (CLG)?
                                      • CLG is a term that is meant to represent any form of community group that is intentionally gathered to engage with a particular topic. 
                                      • CLG’s create an environment for sharing experiences, providing insights, and reflections on experiences with program implementation and administration, and creating relationships that foster future joint, shared, or co-operative initiatives.
                                      Can KMb activities be incorporated in Community Learning Groups (CLG’s)?
                                      • Yes, but what needs to be considered? 
                                        • Within a CLG, the members of the community are already representing potential future knowledge user communities; therefore, organizers can work directly with these individuals to help inform the KMb activities. 
                                        • Organizers need to consider the systemic pressures and power structures that community members navigate.  
                                        • If CLG members represent differing communities, organizers must consider the cultural context of the communities represented. 
                                        • Organizers will need to consider the capacity of individuals to engage in KMb activities.  
                                        • Organizers need to be mindful of the context in which CLG members are situated and the influence of power relations as well as sociocultural and economic factors. 
                                          What are the five phases of KMb specifically for CLG’s?

                                          The phases outlined below are developed to empower and support a more grassroots approach to KMb while focusing on supporting local community leaders internalize learnings, capacity building, and ways to support/empower respective leaders to lead appropriate KMb activities. This is meant to act as a guideline and support as opposed to a rigid checklist.

                                          Phase 1 & 2: Invitation & Planning/ Data Gathering and Analysis 

                                          • The purpose is to engage in an honest and earnest discussion with CLG members about what knowledge is emerging within the CLG, and what (if any) their involvement will be in helping to share it with their home context (community, organization, peers, etc.) 
                                          • The role of the CLG organizer is to be sensitive to the abilities, the willingness, and the level of interest of the CLG members. 

                                          Phase 3: Design  

                                          • If CLG members identify that they are interested in intentional KMb activities, then CLG organizers can utilize the CKMb dissemination plan process, while continually considering the above considerations. 

                                          Phase 4: Dissemination Activities  

                                          • The involvement of the CLG members (as individuals or collectively) and/or the involvement of the organizers to implement the dissemination plan will be dependent upon the decisions made during the previous phases.  

                                          Phase 5: Debrief 

                                          • Debrief will be an essential part of supporting and supporting the cyclical nature of encouraging KMb from CLG. The debrief can also act to help support an evaluation of the social impacts of the KMb activities.