Occupational Health Science

, Volume 1, Issue 1–2, pp 29–45 | Cite as

Dissemination and Implementation Research for Occupational Safety and Health

  • Alicia G. DuganEmail author
  • Laura Punnett
Original Paper


The translation of evidence-based health innovations into real-world practice is both incomplete and exceedingly slow. This represents a poor return on research investment dollars for the general public. U.S. funders of health sciences research (e.g., NIH, CDC, NIOSH) are increasingly calling for dissemination plans, and to a lesser extent for dissemination and implementation (D&I) research, which are studies that examine the effectiveness of D&I efforts and strategies and the predictors of D&I success. For example, rather than merely broadcasting information about a preventable hazard, D&I research in occupational safety and health (OSH) might examine how employers or practitioners are most likely to receive and act upon that information. We propose here that D&I research should be seen as a dedicated and necessary area of study within OSH, as a way to generate new knowledge that can bridge the research-to-practice gap. We present D&I concepts, frameworks, and examples that can increase the capacity of OSH professionals to conduct D&I research and accelerate the translation of research findings into meaningful everyday practice to improve worker safety and health.


Dissemination Implementation Research to practice Occupational safety and health Total Worker Health Health innovations 



This research was supported by the U.S. National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH), Grant Number 1 U19 OH008857. The contents of this publication are solely the responsibility of the authors and do not necessarily represent the official views of NIOSH. The authors express warm appreciation of Dr. Robert Henning for suggesting this article and for his enthusiasm and commitment to D&I in OSH. We also thank Kiley Dugan for her assistance in compiling and formatting our references and proofreading the final version of this manuscript. Finally, we are grateful for the entire CPH-NEW research team of graduate research assistants, research staff and faculty members from the University of Massachusetts Lowell and the University of Connecticut. Their collective efforts have been instrumental in the development, application, and evaluation of the HWPP and more generally in deepening our multi-disciplinary understanding of how to conduct user-centered research of organizational change in the service of worker health and well-being.


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Copyright information

© Springer International Publishing AG 2017

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of MedicineUConn HealthFarmingtonUSA
  2. 2.Department of Public HealthUniversity of Massachusetts LowellLowellUSA

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