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361© The Policy Press • 2007 • ISSN 1744 2648 Key words narrative • synthesis • implementation • methodology Evidence & Policy • vol 3 • no 3 • 2007 • 361-83 re se ar ch Testing methodological developments in the conduct of narrative synthesis: a demonstration review of research on the implementation of smoke alarm interventions Lisa Arai,1 Nicky Britten, Jennie Popay, Helen Roberts,1 Mark Petticrew, Mark Rodgers and Amanda Sowden English In the context of systematic reviews, statistical meta-analysis of findings is not always possible. Where this is the

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attributed. The derivative works do not need to be licensed on the same terms. Evidence synthesis for knowledge exchange: balancing responsiveness and quality in providing evidence for policy and practice Sarah Morton, Karen Seditas, University of Edinburgh, UK Barriers to using research in practice are well documented. This paper describes an innovative process developed by the Centre for Research on Families and Relationships to address these barriers. We supported people to define what they needed to know; how existing evidence could help

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463© The Policy Press • 2007 • ISSN 1744 2648 re se ar ch re se ar ch Key words healthcare • gender • access • review Gender and access to healthcare in the UK: a critical interpretive synthesis of the literature Ellen Annandale, Janet Harvey, Debbie Cavers and Mary Dixon-Woods English Because gender traditionally has been perceived as the preserve of women, gender- comparative research in access to healthcare has been rare. We report a critical interpretive synthesis of the relevant literature, and present the outline of a theoretically grounded framework for

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Key messages A responsive rapid evidence synthesis programme commissioned by the NIHR HSDR programme has addressed topics identified as priorities for the UK National Health Service (NHS). Rapid production of high-quality outputs is facilitated by initial evidence mapping and topic scoping. Involvement of stakeholders at key stages maximises value and potential for impact but the impact of evidence on decision making remains poorly documented. Evidence synthesis programmes should seek the optimum balance between decision makers’ needs for rapid and

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155 Key words social care • research methods • methodological quality • systematic review © The Policy Press • 2008 • ISSN 1744 2648 Evidence & Policy • vol 4 • no 3 • 2008 • 155-82 • 10.1332/174426408X338839 re se ar ch Examining the state of adult social care research 1990-2001: a systematic synthesis of research methods and quality Siobhan Reilly, Chengqiu Xie, Sally Jacobs and David Challis This article reports on a systematic synthesis of the research methods and quality of peer- reviewed empirical research relating to adult social care services (1990

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The Role of Social Research in Politics, Policy and Practice

In complex contemporary societies social science has become increasingly interwoven into the whole fabric of governance. At the same time there is an increasing recognition that attempts to understand the social world which seek to mimic the linear approaches of the conventional ‘hard sciences’ are mostly useless given the complex systems character of society in all its aspects. This book draws on a synthesis of critical realism and complexity theory to examine how social science is applied now and how it might be applied in the future in relation to social transformation in a time of crisis. A central argument is that there is no such thing as a ‘pure’ science of the social and that a recognition of the inevitability of application imposes obligations on social scientists wherever they work which challenge the passivity of most in the face of inequality and injustice.

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Gender relations in welfare states

How to respond to the needs of working parents has become a pressing social policy issue in contemporary Western Europe. This book highlights the politicising of parenthood in the Scandinavian welfare states - focusing on the relationship between parents and the state, and the ongoing renegotiations between the public and the private.

Drawing on new empirical research, leading Scandinavian academics provide an up-to-date record and critical synthesis of Nordic work-family reforms since the 1990s. A broad range of policies targeting working parents is examined including: the expansion of childcare services as a social right; parental leave; cash benefits for childcare; and working hours regulations.

The book also explores policy discourses, scrutinises outcomes, and highlights the similarities and differences between Nordic countries through analyses of comparative statistical data and national case studies. Set in the context of economic restructuring and the growing influence of neo-liberal ideology, each chapter addresses concerns about the impact of policies on the gender relations of parenthood.

“Politicising parenthood in Scandinavia” is a timely contribution to ongoing policy debates on welfare state models, parenthood and gender equality. It will be of particular interest to students and teachers of welfare studies, family policy and gender studies.

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First published as a special issue of Policy & Politics, this critical and practical volume challenges policy theory scholars to change the way they produce and communicate research.

Leading academics propose eight ways to synthesise and translate state of the art knowledge to equip scholars to communicate their insights with each other and a wider audience. Chapters consider topics such as narratives as tools for influencing policy change, essential habits of successful policy entrepreneurs, and applying cultural theory to navigate the policy process.

Providing theoretical clarity and accumulated knowledge, this text highlights the vital importance of translating policy research in practical and understandable ways.

The articles on which Chapters 2, 3 and 5 are based are available Open Access under CC-BY-NC licence.

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As Europe’s public realms face upheaval, this is the first book to identify how social solidarity is being reinvented from below and redefined from above. Interdisciplinary transnational approaches provide new insights into the relationship between national and transnational social solidarity across Europe.Valuable to students, policy makers and scholars, it reveals social solidarity as the defining pillar of European integration, bringing a greater dimension and integrity beyond democracy across nation states.

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Towards equality and democracy

In this collection, innovative and eminent social and policy analysts, including Colin Crouch, Anna Coote, Grahame Thompson and Ted Benton, challenge the failing but still dominant ideology and policies of neo-liberalism.

The editors synthesise contributors’ ideas into a revised framework for social democracy; rooted in feminism, environmentalism, democratic equality and market accountability to civil society.

This constructive and stimulating collection will be invaluable for those teaching, studying and campaigning for transformative political, economic and social policies.

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