This paper acknowledges that the successful utilization of nursing research in practice is a highly complex task. Basic requisites include a positive research culture associated with the essential interest and support needed to promote change. Within this framework factors concerned with the research culture within nursing and the NHS are considered, as well as the research-practice gap, the role of researchers, educational issues and the need for both local and national support. Comparisons are made with the more positive research culture in the USA, and some American research utilization models are mentioned. It is suggested that research is not highly regarded in the UK and that the required level of interest and support depend on nursing research becoming an expected, valued and rewarded activity. Some general suggestions for actions which should promote research utilization are made.