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Bridging Research

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The Bridge Analogy ... Consider your role in bridge building ... Make a commitment to bridge research & practice in new ways! ... – PowerPoint PPT presentation

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Title: Bridging Research


1
Bridging Research Practice Challenges
Opportunities
  • Dale A. Blyth, Ph.D.
  • Associate Dean for Youth Development
  • University of Minnesota Extension Service

Tucson, Arizona February 11, 2003
2
Overview
  • The Bridge Analogy
  • Elements of Effective Bridges
  • Challenges of Bridge Building
  • Why Build More Bridges Now
  • What Types of Bridges Are Needed?
  • Toward a field of Applied Youth Dev.
  • Use this Conference Opportunity

3
The Bridge Analogy
  • Bridges are structures designed to allow traffic
    to cross a gap or barrier between two or more
    places
  • While bridges can occur naturally, they more
    often have to be deliberately designed and
    intentionally implemented for them to be
    successful
  • Success is when the people and resources from one
    place can get to the other place and vice versa

4
Bridging Research and Practice
User-Inspired Research
Research-Inspired Reflection
5
Elements of Effective Bridges
  • Solid Bedrock into which to place the foundations
    on both sides
  • Strength of each tower separately
  • Strength of the supports that hold it up
  • The nature of the surface on which traffic flows
  • The connection to the rest of the world

6
Challenges of Building Bridges Between Research
and Practice
  • The lack of a common theoretical bedrock for both
    research and practice
  • The multiple types of practice and programs
  • The mixed and non-system nature of supports and
    opportunities
  • The limitations perspectives of each field
  • The lack of adequate educational supports
  • The lack of adequate policy supports but high
    expectations for proof
  • The shear size of the gap - its bigger than it
    appears
  • Picking the right places to build

7
Why Build More Bridges Now?
  • Increased Recognition that Supports and
    Opportunities are Not Reaching All Youth
  • Moving from WHAT Youth Need to HOW to Deliver It
  • Both Research Practice Need Help
  • Increased Ripeness among practitioners for
    Using What is Known from Research
  • Increased Academic Support for Applied and Useful
    Research
  • Increased Policy Pressure for Both to be
    Accountable, Effective, and Efficient

8
What Types of Bridges are Needed?
  • Making the Case Bridges
  • Connecting knowledge to public will
  • Connecting research / practical wisdom policy
    makers
  • Connecting whats known and whats available with
    parent and youth decision making
  • Model Program Bridges
  • Connecting specific program models and relevant
    research (e.g., mentoring)
  • Connecting program development with both
    practical wisdom and research knowledge

9
What Other Types of Bridges are Needed?
  • Specific Population Bridges
  • Connecting whats known about a culture or
    population with the way supports and
    opportunities are offered
  • Connecting whats known about a specific age
    group and the ways to deliver supports and
    opportunities
  • Field Building Bridges
  • Connecting those who work on different islands in
    the youth development sea
  • Bridges connecting researchers to policy makers
    and policy makers to practitioners

10
Do we Need a NewField For Bridge Builders?
11
Bridging Research and Practice
12
Bridging Research and Practice
13
What is a Field of Applied Youth Development?
  • A field of YD engineers who design build
    bridges
  • A field that complements rather than replaces
    primary disciplinary fields of people
  • A field that strengthens both user-inspired
    research research-reflective practice
  • A field with its own critical infrastructure
    from places to dialogue to places to publish
  • A field where investments are made in its
    development
  • A field that will further enhance the deliberate
    design and intentional implementation of supports
    and opportunities for youth

14
During This Conference, I Hope You Will . . .
  • Consider your role in bridge building
  • Challenge your assumptions about how and why
    bridges work, and do not work, in this field
  • Analyze why some of the bridges you hear about
    this week have been built successfully
  • Examine what types of infrastructure you believe
    is needed for YD bridge builders
  • Design some bridges you want to help build
  • Make a commitment to bridge research practice
    in new ways!!
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