University of Tasmania

File(s) under permanent embargo

How emergency services organisations can - and do - utilise research

journal contribution
posted on 2023-05-21, 08:55 authored by Christine OwenChristine Owen
In emergency management organisations, the drive to use research to inform practice has been growing for some time. This paper discusses findings from a survey used to investigate perceived effectiveness of a number of important processes in research utilisation. In 2016, a survey was completed by 266 respondents in 29 fire and emergency services agencies. Questions sought answers on perceived effectiveness in disseminating research within agencies, assessing and evaluating the impacts on agency practice of the research, implementing agency changes that may be needed, monitoring processes to track changes and communicate outcomes of changes made as a result of research. The study found that there were differences in levels of perceived effectiveness between those in senior management and front-line service positions. The differences suggest that front-line services personnel have lower levels of perceived effectiveness in how research is disseminated. The study also found agencies had different approaches to keep up-to-date with research advances. An examination of the activities identified four developmental levels of research utilisation maturity. The findings suggest more work is needed to better understand the enablers and constraints to utilising research to support development of evidence-informed practice.


Bushfire and Natural Hazard CRC


Publication title

The Australian Journal of Emergency Management








School of Social Sciences


Emergency Management Australia

Place of publication


Repository Status

  • Restricted

Socio-economic Objectives

Technological and organisational innovation