The challenges of evaluating large-scale, multi-partner programmes: the case of NIHR CLAHRCs

Graham P. Martin, Vicky Ward, Jane Hendy, Emma Rowley, Susan Nancarrow, Janet Heaton, Nicky Britten, Sandra Fielden, Steven Ariss

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

24 Citations (Scopus)


The limited extent to which research evidence is utilised in healthcare and other public services
is widely acknowledged. The United Kingdom government has attempted to address this gap by
funding nine Collaborations for Leadership in Applied Health Research and Care (CLAHRCs).
CLAHRCs aim to carry out health research, implement research findings in local healthcare
organisations and build capacity across organisations for generating and using evidence. This
wide-ranging brief requires multifaceted approaches; assessing CLAHRCs’ success thus poses
challenges for evaluation. This paper discusses these challenges in relation to seven CLAHRC
evaluations, eliciting implications and suggestions for others evaluating similarly complex
interventions with diverse objectives.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)489-509
Number of pages21
JournalEvidence & Policy
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - Nov 2011


  • evidence-based practice
  • evaluation
  • knowledge translation
  • methodology

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