What factors define a successful inter-agency partnership? Battelle recently conducted an evaluation study for the National Institutes of Health, Office of Science Policy in the Office of the Director to find out.
The focus of this study was on the role that collaborations between NIH and other agencies within the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) play in promoting the uptake and utilization of NIH-supported research results into the policies, programs and services used to fulfill the mission of HHS. The evaluation fostered an understanding of the full scope and nature of the many collaborative efforts, and examined in more detail how results from NIH-sponsored research flow into and inform the work of other HHS agencies. It also identified the key factors that facilitate or hinder those efforts.
In addition, the evaluation was used to:
- solicit information from key stakeholders in order to identify areas where new collaborations could be fostered,
- generate recommendations for how best to implement effective collaborations, and
- improve NIH’s ability to monitor, evaluate and improve collaboration overall within the agency and across all of HHS.
The evaluation consisted of several tasks and components, including a literature review, analysis of data in the NIH Inter-agency Collaboration Reporting System (CRS) and a mixed methods approach to collecting and analyzing relevant data. Data were collected from federal employees affiliated with six operating divisions within the HHS through web surveys and in-depth, one-on-one interviews. Battelle analyzed the collected data (quantitative and qualitative) and delivered written reports, plus in-person briefings, on the results of all of the evaluation components.