International Practice Development Journal


Title of ArticleFrom research into practice to practice development: FoNS and the IPDJ
Type of ArticleGuest Editorial
Author/sTheresa Shaw
ReferenceVolume 7, Issue 2, Guest Editorial
Date of PublicationNovember 2017

As this is the final issue of the journal for 2017, FoNS’ 30th anniversary year, I thought I would use the opportunity to reflect on how FoNS has evolved alongside practice development and the success of the IPDJ.

FoNS’ first strapline ‘Putting Research into Practice’ reflected the early purposes of the organisation: to spread research findings and to embed research evidence into practice. There was a clear desire to achieve these aims and to make a significant impact on nursing, so our activities were geared towards engaging with nurses and supporting them in practice, education and academia to use research and evidence rather than simply spreading information.

The work of FoNS was gaining momentum at the same time as practice development was evolving. While references to practice development can be traced back to the early 1970s, it was during the 1980s that it began to make its presence felt, influenced by the seminal work of key nursing leaders such as Alan Pearson (1983) and Sue Pembrey (1989). As FoNS became more established, it made links with organisations such as the National Institute for Nursing, which was leading research to develop a conceptual framework for integrating nursing research, development and practice (Kitson et al., 1996). The evidence-based practice movement was also becoming more widely acknowledged. However, its uptake and use remained tentative, not least because the approaches to implementation continued to be top down and linear, based on the arguably unrealistic assumption that nurses and others would naturally draw on evidence and change practice. Promoting ways to break down the barriers impeding research and evidence use in practice was therefore a strong focus for FoNS at this time.

This article by Theresa Shaw is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution Non-Commercial 3.0 License.

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