Practice-Engaged Research and Development in Education

This paper argues for education research and development (R&D) arrangements and policies that systematically encourage engagement with practice.  Citing practices in health-services research and commercial R&D as well as education, it advocates more attention to approaches such as the following:

- Grounding studies in practitioners’ problems and exploring practitioners’ solutions
- Building knowledge by building interventions, as in the 90-Day R&D projects of the Institute for Healthcare Improvement that address specific questions of practice, or in the rapid prototyping approach used in the fields of design and software development
- Opening the development process to many participants, drawing on ideas such as the engagement of customers in “open R&D” in business
- Broadening the focus for R&D by not only studying the implementation of particular innovations in school contexts, but also studying the capacity of schools and school systems to absorb innovation