Policy as a struggle for meaning: disentangling knowledge translation across international health contexts

Aris • Komporozos-Athanasiou , Eivor Oborn, Michael Barrett, Yolande Chan

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Over the last decade, research in medical science has focused on knowledge translation and diffusion of best practices to enable improved health outcomes. However, there has been less attention given to the role of policy in influencing the translation of best practice across different national contexts. This paper argues that the underlying set of public discourses of healthcare policy significantly influence its development with implications for the dissemination of best practices. Our research uses Critical Discourse Analysis (CDA) to examine the policy discourses surrounding the treatment of stroke across Canada and the UK. It focuses in specific on how concepts of knowledge translation, user empowerment, and service innovation construct different accounts of the ‘health service’ in the two countries. These findings provide an important yet overlooked starting point for understanding the role of policy development in knowledge transfer and the translation of science into health practice.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)215-227
Number of pages12
JournalKnowledge Management Research & Practice
Publication statusPublished - 2011


  • discourse, policy. patients, stroke, international comparison

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