UBC Faculty Research and Publications

“How do you measure a relationship?” Assessment and evaluation challenges of knowledge exchange activities in information work O’Brien, Heather, 1977-; McDavid, Kristina; Yao, Jess


Today there is increasing emphasis on knowledge exchange (KE), the movement of knowledge and expertise amongst diverse groups to enhance research uptake, use, and impact in healthcare, government, and community settings. Library and information science (LIS) professionals are central actors in KE though community engagement, scholarly communication, literacy, and cultural heritage initiatives, but (how) is this work formally documented and evaluated? Through interviews with 24 information professionals working in varied settings, we considered how KE activities fit into the current library assessment and evaluation landscape. Using thematic analysis, we identified challenges with placing this work within current assessment practices and evaluation frameworks and showing its value, as well as a desire for alternative, more dynamic assessment and evaluation methods. We discuss these findings with respect to previous research in LIS and KE more broadly to consider professional and organizational implications.

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