Researchers as knowledge brokers: A step toward research-informed policy? Lessons from the Israeli case
Keywords:mediation, knowledge brokering, research use, field-policy-research gap
In the 1970s, the role of “chief scientist” was established in Israel as part of a knowledge mediation model aimed to promote research-informed policy and narrow the academia-field-policy gap. This paper examines how when researchers cross the boundary toward a policy role and serve as knowledge brokers, they may promote research utilization in policy. This sheds light on a key issue in the field of education research, specifically, what conditions or circumstances contribute to the maximization of research utilization and the implementation of research-based policy recommendations. Using qualitative methodology, we conducted semi-structured interviews with past chief scientists and analyzed newspaper articles to understand the complex nature of the role and to propose practical suggestions for improving its construction in future policy beyond the Israeli context. Despite the positive aura surrounding the common use of intermediaries, the issue of promoting such entities at the national educational level has not yet been realized in a coherent, stand-alone policy globally.