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Tracking the Use and Impact of a Community Social Report: Where Does the Information Go

"The purpose of this paper is to report on a study evaluating the extent
to which a social report (entitled "Hamilton-Wentworth Profile on
Children and Youth") was read and used by recipients. Subjects were
divided into two groups: an Active Group which had worked on producing
the Profile and/or requested copies of it once it had been released,
and a Passive Group which had received copies of the Profile through a
general mailing list used for other research reports. Approximately one
year later, 90% of the Active Group recalled the Profile compared to
21% of the Passive Group. Similarly, 83% of Active Group respondents
had read the Profile compared to 8% of Passive Group subjects. 80% of
Active Group respondents and 5% of Passive Group respondents used the
Profile. The results suggest that if social reports are read by local
community agencies and individuals, they will be used to help improve
conditions for children and youth. Social reports at the local level
are more likely to be read if potential users are engaged in the
process of report production and if the reports are disseminated to the
appropriate target audience."

[Abstract from]