Tusla - Ireland's Child & Family Agency

Creating a Research Culture within Teams

As Managers and Supervisors YOU are the principal agents who can work with your staff to promote research and information use at all levels of the organization and see it as a cornerstone of practice.

Download the leaflet, How you as a Manager and/or Supervisor can help develop Tusla’s Research Culture


Supporting Research at Service and Regional Level

Strategies can include;

Plan Events

Invite academics and a range of other speakers to talk to your staff about specialist topics of interest and to demonstrate how easy it is to embed research into practice.

Check in with National Research Office staff who liaise with all the academic institutions in the country here

Identify Knowledge Gaps

How can these be brought to the surface and what steps need to be taken to address these? And by whom? Check out this link for advice

Share the Knowledge

Is a member of staff interested in and possess specialist knowledge on a given topic? Encourage them to write for the weekly Research Corner and share with the organisation as a whole.

WFLD National Strategy for Continuing Professional Development

Tusla’s National Strategy for Continuing Professional Development provides both a CPD cycle and framework, both of which from a personal as well as service based level, provide the essential tools and dispositions to see research as an activity that can successfully be embedded within practice.

Tusla defines CPD as a mechanism to:

  • maintain and improve knowledge, skills, attitudes and values of staff;
  • assess learning and development needs against organisational goals; 
  • support quality child protection and welfare practice;
  • promote a learning organisation

Information Sessions to Team Leaders and Senior Managers

Short, but well planned sessions/spaces to discuss challenges, strengths and opportunities as well as needs.

EPPI Toolkit

Ask how can the EPPI toolkit be applied to ensure that all practice is based on the best available evidence.

Access the EPPI toolkit here

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Supporting Research at Team Level

Strategies can include;

Team Meetings and Case Conferences

Bringing the latest evidence to the table and assessing its contextual value and application


Communities of Practice

Seeing how this established knowledge sharing and exchange process can encourage network development, offer support, build confidence and share professional expertise


For example, see 

Leading Communities of Practice in Social Work

Case Studies / Group Supervision

Opportunities to share practice wisdom and learning wherever and whoever it comes from

Learning from missed opportunities

Creating a safe and secure space to admit to such opportunities and achieve personal and team based growth from the experience

Journal Clubs

Before and after the Team Meetings and the Case Conferences, the place, both physical and virtual, to search for and examine the most recent peer reviewed, published evidence. For example, Tusla Learning into Practice Group on LinkedIn

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Supporting Research by Individual Members of Staff

Tusla Open Athens User Names and Passwords

Actively encourage all staff to register for a Tusla Open Athens account. Sign up at https://register.openathens.net/tusla.ie/register 

Register for Barnardos Library and Information Service

Actively encourage all staff to register.

Sign up at 


Complete online electronic searching tutorials

…to develop database search skills. These can be accessed at https://www.tusla.ie/research/databases/database-tutorials/

Make Research Activity

…a mandatory element of supervision discussion. Bring your evidence to the table and discuss with your Supervisor

Professional Development Plans

All professionals need to admit to the need for constant growth and development – and in the midst of the pressures of the workplace, a plan is normally the only way to ensure it happens.


Have you considered CPD points to be gained from this activity? See the CORU website for more

Make sure that practice is always informed by the most recent evidence

…through individual goal setting in caseload management and ensuring that the inclusion of such evidence is explicit and sourced.

Review research and information resources

…to support and/or strengthen assessments, safety plans and court reports.


Weekly and Daily Evidence Reminders

Have you signed up to Journal Contents Alerts and to RSS Feeds for the most valuable evidence sources for yourselves? 


Have you signed up to the Barnardos Library Alert?


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