Networking: the Human Factor in Knowledge Exchange
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Evidence-influenced policy has become the 'gold standard' which compels a wide variety of researchers, research funders and policy makers, from very different organisational contexts, to share or exchange knowledge. Opportunities to facilitate interaction; better understand each other's professional cultures and goals and also build collaborations are important to promote the use of research to inform and influence policy and practice. It is important to find ways in which such interactions between people can be facilitated, particularly as many stakeholders are not trained in the practice of knowledge exchange. Conferences are powerful, albeit temporary, clusters of contextualised knowledge exchange which facilitate low risk initial contacts and the ongoing development of collaborations.