Rooted in Research

Nearly everything the Center does has underpinnings in peer-reviewed research. Our team scours academic journals from a range of disciplines to unlock insights to inform strategic communication strategies. While primary research is an important part of the discovery process, our team’s expertise is in translation of other scholar’s work.

Our research team includes two full-time Ph.D.s, part-time doctoral and master’s degree candidates serving as research assistants for the Center, and access to expertise from a range of scholars at the Top 10 public research university we call home home and beyond. The team works on a range of products, including academic scans for partners, public scholarship development and dives on specific research inquiries.

The ‘Living Lit Review’

One of the tactics that makes our research process unique is a collaboration of scholars we call the “Living Literature Review.” A literature review is often conducted by scholars when starting an exploration to discover what researchers have examined previously and involves citations from published work.

We take that process a bit further; rather than a static discovery process through individuals’ review of available scholarship, our process convenes the scholars from a range of disciplines and practitioners working in the arena to a series of facilitated conversations. These conversations can help unlock existing and new veins of inquiry across disciplines, creates a feedback loop between scholars and practitioners and helps shine light where connections may exist that aren’t explicit in the discipline silos.

Following the conversations of the living lit review process, our team synthesizes the discussions, curates the findings and supplements with additional traditional literature review findings.

We’ve conducted a number of living lit review explorations that have informed our frameworks and partner collaborations, including our insights in the science of story building, the science of trust and our work on best-practices in messaging vaccine uptake to battle the SARS-CoV-2 pandemic.


Have a project that could be helped by our research process? Reach out to our research team to start the conversation.