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Making Sense of Implementation Theories, Models, and Frameworks

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Implementation Science 3.0

Abstract

This chapter presents a taxonomy that distinguishes among different categories of theories, models and frameworks used in implementation science. The chapter describes five categories of theoretical approaches that achieve three overarching aims: process models, which are aimed at describing and/or guiding the process of translating research into practice; determinant frameworks, classic theories and implementation theories, which are aimed at understanding and/or explaining what influences implementation outcomes; and evaluation frameworks, which are aimed at evaluating implementation. Awareness of how the approaches differ is important to facilitate the selection of relevant approaches. Most determinant frameworks provide limited “how-to” support for carrying out implementation endeavours since the determinants usually are too generic to provide sufficient detail for guiding implementation. And while the relevance of addressing barriers and enablers to implementation is mentioned in many process models, these models do not identify or structure specific determinants associated with implementation success.

Reprinted from Nilsen, P. (2015). Making sense of implementation theories, models and frameworks. Implementation Science, 10(53). Copyright © Nilsen.; licensee BioMed Central. 2015. Some modifications to the text were made. https://doi.org/10.1186/s13012-015-0242-0, licensed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License (https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/).

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Acknowledgments

I am grateful to Bianca Albers, Susanne Bernhardsson, Dean L. Fixsen, Karen Grimmer, Ursula Reichenpfader and Kerstin Roback for constructive comments on drafts of this chapter. Also, thanks are due to Margit Neher, Justin Presseau and Jeanette Wassar Kirk for their input.

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Nilsen, P. (2020). Making Sense of Implementation Theories, Models, and Frameworks. In: Albers, B., Shlonsky, A., Mildon, R. (eds) Implementation Science 3.0. Springer, Cham. https://doi.org/10.1007/978-3-030-03874-8_3

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