Assessment of the impact of a clinical and health services research call in Catalonia

Emilia Sánchez Ruiz, Paula Adam, Maite Solans Domènech, Joan M.V. Pons, Marta Aymerich, Silvina Berra, Imma Guillamón, Gaietà Permanyer-Miralda

Research output: Indexed journal article Articlepeer-review

18 Citations (Scopus)


This article presents the ex-post assessment of a program of clinical and health services research and the evaluation of the social impact. The Catalan Agency for Health Information, Assessment, and Quality (CAHIAQ) promotes a biannual open, public, competitive extramural research call to conduct non-commercial clinical and health services research. Its aim is to address local needs of research
(knowledge gaps) and to assess the implementation of innovation. Approximately 5.8 million Euros have been allocated to the call. To meet the Agency’s mission, a periodical ‘call for expressions of interest’ and topic prioritization is organized prior to the research call. The awarded projects are
submitted to an ex-ante, ongoing, and ex-post assessment. Impact assessment of the research call on advancing knowledge and healthcare decision making is based on the Canadian Academy of Health Sciences framework (Panel on Return on Investment in Health Research, 2009). The methods used include bibliometric analysis, surveys to researchers and decision-makers, and a more in-depth case
study of translation pathways. This includes a crossover of cases from 1996 to 2004. Some results are compared against other international health services research calls. The conclusion is that local agencies can significantly contribute to fill knowledge gaps in a specific context. Assessment of the complete research cycle provides opportunities for improving the entire research process (identification of knowledge needs, call for proposals, funding allocation, research completion, subsequent impact). Specifically, assessment of the different types of impact of research development on knowledge generation and decision making closes the evaluation cycle fulfilling the Agency’s mission.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)319-328
Number of pages10
JournalResearch evaluation
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - Oct 2012


  • payback model
  • research impact assessment
  • informed decision-making
  • funding agency
  • clinical and health services research
  • topic priorization


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