Evidence-Informed Decision Making in Public Health

Search: Efficiently search for research evidence

A clearly defined question or problem is the starting point for an effective literature search. This step of the Evidence-Informed Decision Making in Public Health process helps you answer the question:

“Where should I look to find the best available research evidence to address the issue?”

Your search strategy should aim to locate the strongest quality and most relevant evidence first. When searching for quantitative evidence (e.g., effectiveness of an intervention, health effects, cost effectiveness, etc.) some study designs are considered stronger than others. It is important that the research design is the most appropriate to answer the question being asked.

Using the 6S pyramid can help public health decision makers find the best research evidence with the least amount of time and effort.

Click Here to access a Search Pyramid of General Public Health Research Evidence

Each level of the 6S pyramid draws on research evidence from the lower layers, so that starting a search at the top (or the highest possible layer of the 6S Pyramid model) yields the highest quality and most synthesized research evidence first.

For more information about this step, please complete the Searching for Research Evidence in Public Health module in the Learning Centre.

EIPH Wheel - SearchAppraise Synthesize Adapt Implement Evaluate Define

Efficiently search for research evidence.

We recommend these resources from the Registry of Methods and Tools to help with this step:

Search pyramids to find research evidence

For more information about different types of questions relevant to public health and related research designs you can refer to:

Quantitative Research Questions and Study Designs