Managerial attitudes and perceived barriers regarding evidence-based practice: An international survey

Barends, Eric; Villanueva, Josh; Rousseau, Denise M.; Briner, Rob B.; Jepsen, Denise M.; Houghton, Edward; ten Have, Steven
October 2017
PLoS ONE;10/03/2017, Vol. 12 Issue 10, p1
Academic Journal
Evidence-based practice (EBP) in management is still in its infancy. Several studies suggest that managers in businesses and other organizations do not consult the scientific evidence when making decisions. To facilitate its uptake, we need to better understand practitioner attitudes and perceived barriers related to EBP. In medicine and nursing, an abundance of research exists on this subject, although such studies are rare in management. To address this gap, we surveyed 2,789 management practitioners in Belgium, the Netherlands, the United States, the United Kingdom and Australia. Our findings indicate that most managers we studied have positive attitudes towards EBP. However, lack of time and a limited understanding of scientific research are perceived as major barriers to the uptake and implementation of EBP in management. Studies in other professions where EBP is far more established also report similar barriers. We discuss the implications of our findings for practice, education and research, providing suggestions to enhance use of EBP in management practice.


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