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New Resource Outlines Ways to Use Insufficient Evidence Findings

The Community Guide has released new resources to help public health practitioners, researchers, and funders understand what insufficient evidence means and how it can be used. Check out the Insufficient Evidence (IE) Findings User Guides to learn how IE findings can benefit your work.

Why are the User Guides Important?

  • Although the number of insufficient evidence findings is decreasing over time, they still make up around 40% of all Task Force findings and are the most misunderstood. User feedback indicates that an intervention strategy with an IE finding is 1) assumed by funders to not work, 2) understood correctly but ignored by funders who prefer awardees use what is known to be effective in public health, or 3) misunderstood by researchers who are uncertain of what evidence is lacking or how they can contribute to filling evidence gaps.
  • Insufficient Evidence Findings User Guides can help public health practitioners, researchers, and funders interpret and use IE findings.

What Makes the Insufficient Evidence Findings User Guides Credible?

Implementation scientists who specialize in helping people use evidence-based findings, practitioners, and representatives from the following groups collaborated to develop the user guides:

What Do the User Guides Include?

User Guides include the following sections:

  • Understanding the Evidence
  • Making Decisions Based on the Evidence
  • Using IE Findings: An Example from the Field

What’s Important to Consider when Using Insufficient Evidence Findings?

An IE finding does not mean that the intervention approach does not work. Rather, it means that more research is needed. The Task Force issues IE findings when there are too few studies, inconsistent evidence, or studies with methodological limitations. Public health practitioners, researchers and funders should understand:

  • How an IE finding can inform research and evaluation to fill evidence gaps in a particular topic area.
  • How to use IE findings to draft funding opportunities that help fill evidence gaps in a particular area.