Improvement, innovation and leadership in health and welfare
The Quality Improvements, Innovations and Leadership research area was established only recently, yet it is well founded institutionally.
Quality improvement has been a subject for many years in all academic programmes. At the School of Health and Welfare, academic programmes include goal descriptions that provide students with the opportunity to initiate and participate in quality development and change analysis. The School of Health and Welfare also offers advanced education focused on leadership and change in healthcare and welfare. Having completed their educations, students should be able to manage and instigate change and developmental work in the health and welfare sectors.
The overall goal of the research area is to generate new knowledge for systematic quality studies and the production of methods to translate theoretical knowledge into practice in everyday life in healthcare and social work. Research is based on the individual´s need for participation, continuity and safe and humane care in healthcare and social work. Innovations are based on cooperation between researchers and professionals, between a range of participants in healthcare and social work and between students and teachers. Innovative cooperation forms are implemented and research questions are studied with interactive research designs.
Gender, ethics and culture and medico-economic issues are included in the research. Projects are designed to generate knowledge about and support for processes that transfer theory to practice. Research also involves stimulating the growth of new educational models for interprofessional, management and operational issues with a specific emphasis on the importance of leadership.
Research that takes place in the research area has high relevance for society. Quality work is crucial to the development of services provided by county councils and social services departments, both nationally and internationally. Better knowledge about services provided and their effects increases the possibilities of offering citizens the support and help to which they are entitled. Healthcare and social services are exhibiting runaway costs in many countries without necessarily providing services of better quality. This means that internationally there is an enormous demand for knowledge about how to improve quality and methods to investigate processes and results. Vinnova, the Vårdal Foundation and the Swedish Association of Local Authorities and Regions formed the Vinnvård Research Programme to encourage the realization of research in the area. Vinnvård is currently financing a large project called Bridging the Gaps for researchers in these settings.
Researchers in Quality Improvements, Innovations and Leadership work closely with researchers in other schools at Jönköping University. Research projects also cooperate with county councils and municipalities and with other universities and institutes, both nationally and internationally. One example of this cooperation is The Dartmouth Institute in the United States.
The School of Health and Welfare shall become one of the leading participants in systematic quality and improvement efforts. Processes and organizations shall be developed so that the services that are provided correspond to the needs and demands of patients and clients for safe and effective healthcare.