A new measure to understand the role of science in US Congress: Lessons learned from the Legislative Use of Research Survey (LURS)

<jats:p><jats:bold>Background:/jats:bold There is growing interest in and recognition of the need to use scientific evidence to inform policymaking. However, many of the existing studies on the use of research evidence (URE) have been largely qualitative, and the majority of existing quantitative measures are underdeveloped or were tested in regional or context-dependent settings. We are unaware of any quantitative measures of URE with national policymakers in the US.<jats:bold>Aims and objectives:/jats:bold Explore how to measure URE quantitatively by validating a measure of congressional staff’s attitudes and behaviors regarding URE, the Legislative Use of Research Survey (LURS), and by discussing the lessons learned through administering the survey.<jats:bold>Methods:/jats:bold A 68-item survey was administered to 80 congressional staff to measure their reported research use, value of research, interactions with researchers, general information sources, and research information sources. Confirmatory factor analyses were conducted on each of these five scales. We then trimmed the number of items, based on a combination of poor factor loadings and theoretical rationale, and ran the analyses on the trimmed subscales.<jats:bold>Findings:/jats:bold We substantially improved our model fits for each scale over the original models and all items had acceptable factor loadings with our trimmed 35-item survey. We also describe the unique set of challenges and lessons learned from surveying congressional staff.<jats:bold>Discussion and conclusions:/jats:bold This work contributes to the transdisciplinary field of URE by offering a tool for studying the mechanisms that can bridge research and policy and shedding light into best practices for measuring URE with national policymakers in the US./jats:p

This is a post-peer-review, pre-copy edited version of an article published in Evidence & Policy: A Journal of Research, Debate and Practice. The definitive publisher-authenticated version [A new measure to understand the role of science in US Congress: lessons learned from the Legislative Use of Research Survey (LURS). Evidence & Policy: A Journal of Research, Debate and Practice (2021)] is available online at: https://doi.org/10.1332/174426421x16134931606126

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Work Title A new measure to understand the role of science in US Congress: Lessons learned from the Legislative Use of Research Survey (LURS)
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Open Access
Creators
  1. Elizabeth C. Long
  2. Rebecca L. Smith
  3. J.Taylor Scott
  4. Brittany Gay
  5. Cagla Giray
  6. Rachel Storace
  7. Shannon Guillot-Wright
  8. D. Max Crowley
License In Copyright (Rights Reserved)
Work Type Article
Publisher
  1. Bristol University Press
Publication Date November 1, 2021
Publisher Identifier (DOI)
  1. 10.1332/174426421x16134931606126
Source
  1. Evidence & Policy: A Journal of Research, Debate and Practice
Deposited May 23, 2022

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  • Created
  • Added Long et al (2021) Understanding the role of science in US Congress (LURS)-1.pdf
  • Added Creator Elizabeth C. Long
  • Added Creator Rebecca L. Smith
  • Added Creator J.Taylor Scott
  • Added Creator Brittany Gay
  • Added Creator Cagla Giray
  • Added Creator Rachel Storace
  • Added Creator Shannon Guillot-Wright
  • Added Creator D. Max Crowley
  • Published