A significant challenge in research translation is that interested parties interpret and apply the associated terms and conceptual frameworks in different ways.
The purpose of this review was to: a) examine different research translation frameworks; b) examine the similarities and differences between the frameworks; and c) identify key strengths and weaknesses of the models when they are applied in practice.
The final review included 98 papers, and 41 different frameworks and models were identified. The most frequently applied knowledge translation framework in the literature was RE-AIM, followed by the knowledge translation continuum or ‘T’ models, the Knowledge to Action framework, the PARiHS framework, evidence based public health models, and the stages of research and evaluation model.
The models identified in this review stem from different fields, including implementation science, basic and medical sciences, health services research and public health, and propose different but related pathways to closing the research–practice gap.