Developing theory about community-based participatory research III

(continuing a series of posts presenting an exploratory research proposal about community-based participatory research [CBPR] on health disparities [HD] from March 2010)

Engagement^5 refers to five kinds of engagement:

a.  With oneself.  (“Respect, risk, and revelation combine so that participants’ ‘gears’ engage allowing them to sustain quite a high level of energy during the workshop…  The participants… are reminded of their aspirations to work in supportive communities.” [8])

b.  With others. (“The small number and mixed composition of the workshop participants means that participants have repeated exchanges with those who differ from them in meaningful and generative ways.” [8])

c.  Flexible engagement (“An ideal in which researchers in any knowledge-making situation are able to connect quickly with others who are almost ready—either formally or otherwise—to foster participatory processes and, through the experience such processes provide their participants, contribute to enhancing the capacity of others to do likewise.” [3, p. 225])

d. Constituency-building (This comes about “when you draw people into reflection, dialogue, and other participatory processes that elicit ideas about the current situation, clarify objectives, and generate ideas and plans to take action to improve it; when people work together to implement actions; and when people see evaluations of how good the actions/changes were in achieving the objectives.” [9])

e. Team-building (Arriving at a group who share a common concern [in this case, about a specific source of current and future health disparities] and are prepared to address “the challenge of bringing into interaction not only a wider range of researchers, but a wider range of social agents, and… the challenge of keeping them working through differences and tensions until plans and practices are developed in which all the participants are invested.” [3, p. 199])

The initial topics for the proposed workshops will primarily engage academic researchers before reaching out from that base:

a. Speaking to skeptics of community-based participatory research in health

(an analysis of evidence about CBPR and synthesis of best practices)

b. Learning to participate

(an analysis of evidence about training for both conventional participation [10] and cyber collaboration [11] and synthesis of best practices)

c.  Health disparities or population health?

(addressing theory, evidence, and controversies about social determinants of health and corresponding health policy [1])

d.  How can CBPR be connected to HD?

(addressing theory, evidence, and controversies [4])

e.  Sources of current and future health disparities in Boston and the contributions UMB researchers could make to address them

(identifying a specific source that engages the skills and interest of UMB researchers)

f.  Pilot workshop on CBPR for the HD source identified in Workshop e

(with goal of formulating a CBPR proposal for funding)

(To be continued)


[1] Rose, G. (1985). “Sick individuals and sick populations.” International Journal of Epidemiology 14: 32-38.  Lynch, J. (2007), “Relevant Risk, Revolution and Revisiting Rose: Causes of Population Levels and Social Inequalities in Health,” (viewed 30 Sept. 2009)

[3] Taylor, P.J. (2005), Unruly Complexity: Ecology, Interpretation, Engagement. U. Chicago Press.

[8] Taylor, P. J., S. J. Fifield, et al. (2009). “Cultivating Collaborators: Concepts and Questions Emerging Interactively From An Evolving, Interdisciplinary Workshop.”  Ms. (viewed 16 March 2010).

[9] Taylor, P.J. (2009) Action Research Cycles and Epicycles, (viewed 16 March 2010).

[10] Schuman, S., Ed. (2006). Creating a Culture of Collaboration: The International Association of Facilitators Handbook. San Francisco, Jossey-Bass.

[11] Swan, M. (2009). “Emerging Patient-Driven Health Care Models: An Examination of Health Social Networks, Consumer Personalized Medicine and Quantified Self-Tracking.” International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health Reports 6: 492-525.


One thought on “Developing theory about community-based participatory research III

  1. Pingback: Developing theory about community-based participatory research II « Intersecting Processes

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