Experiences and perceptions of evidence use among senior stakeholders in the HSE - Evidence use in the Irish health service

The aim of this study was to examine experiences and perceptions of evidence use, particularly research evidence, among senior stakeholders in the Irish Health Service.  The research was funded by the HSE Research and Development Unit (2020-2021).  A qualitative study was undertaken to explore the perceived barriers and facilitators to the use of evidence, and to elicit preferences for strategies and supports to promote the uptake of research evidence in the HSE.

We are collaborating with Dr Ana Terres, Head of Research and Evidence, Assistant National Director of Strategic Planning and Transformation, HSE. For further information about this study, please contact:

Postdoctoral researcher: Dr Susan Calnan at susan.calnan@ucc.ie or

Lead investigator: Dr Sheena McHugh at S.McHugh@ucc.ie.

Why did we do this research?

The study describes evidence use among senior stakeholders within the HSE, with a particular focus on research evidence, and identifies barriers and enablers to using research evicence to inform decision-making.  The results will inform the development of measures and strategies to support the use of research evidence in the health service. 

What was involved?

Semi-structured interviews were conducted with a sample of senior stakeholders in the HSE. Purposive sampling was used to identify study participants, with the assistance of study collaborators from the HSE’s Research and Development Unit. 

HSE Project outputs



  • National HSE R&D Share and Learn Knowledge Translation Seminar.  Oral Presentation (virtual seminar) "Evidence use among senior management: Understanding preferences and practices. Presenter:  Sheena McHugh 29/06/2022
  • NIHR ARC South London, Kings College London, 5th Implementation Science Research Conference. Oral Presentation (Virtual) "Experience and Perceptions of evidence use among senior health service stakeholders: A qualitative study.  Presenter:  Susan Calnan 15/07/2022


Health Implementation Research Hub

School of Public Health, Western Gateway Building, T12 XF62,