As a learning organization, PCORI believes in rigorous internal evaluation and analysis to ensure continuous improvement in the quality, efficiency, and effectiveness of our work and funded clinical comparative effectiveness research (CER). The Evaluation and Analysis (E&A) program supports PCORI’s mission to help people make better-informed healthcare decisions by producing and promoting evidence-based research guided by patients and other stakeholders. 

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The E&A team fosters the culture of PCORI as a learning organization by planning our evaluation and reporting our results. This includes maintaining the evaluation framework and conducting activities under four main functions:

  • Assessing the impact of PCORI’s work
  • Understanding what PCORI funds
  • Informing PCORI process improvement
  • Building evidence for the science of engagement

Assessing the Impact of PCORI’s work

We evaluate how PCORI-funded CER advances the organization’s strategic goals of increasing useful information to guide stakeholder decisions, speeding uptake and use of CER findings, and influencing others to advance patient-centered research. Evaluation efforts include:

Understanding What PCORI Funds

We support PCORI strategic decision-making, public reporting, and evaluation efforts by identifying key characteristics of CER studies and PCORI-funded investigators. PCORI uses this information to describe investments in research that are relevant to patients, clinicians, payers, and other stakeholders; to analyze gaps to inform future funding; and to describe our funded portfolio compared to other funders’ portfolios.

Informing PCORI Process Improvement

Operational excellence is a key element of funding useful, relevant, and evidenced-based CER. The E&A team uses an ongoing feedback loop, including surveys of research applicants, merit reviewers, and PCORI meeting attendees, to monitor and improve PCORI’s performance. Continuous improvement of PCORI funding application and review processes plays an important role in attracting strong research applications and achieving rigorous merit review.

Building Evidence for the Science of Engagement

The E&A team, in collaboration with PCORI’s Engagement program, evaluates how to engage patients and other stakeholders as meaningful and effective partners in research and how stakeholder engagement contributes to research—from study design to dissemination. We learn about engagement from PCORI-funded researchers and stakeholder partners through a variety of methods including surveys, interviews and literature reviews. The information we collect is used to create evidence-based tools and other resources to encourage stakeholder engagement in research. 


Posted: September 10, 2014; Updated: August 13, 2019

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