Sustaining Long-term Community-Academic Partnerships: Negotiating Power and Presence
Keywords:Intimate Partner Violence, Community-Based Participatory Research, Research Practice Partnerships, Domestic Violence, Evaluation
Community based participatory research (CBPR) partnerships simultaneously increase knowledge and community well-being. Despite the growing number of long-term (as opposed to project-specific) CBPR partnerships, research has yet to sufficiently explore factors that contribute to their success and sustainability over time. This study investigated this question by exploring the perceived benefits, barriers, and facilitators of participation in one long-term CBPR partnership, with particular attention to the role of power. Fifteen members and non-members of a CBPR partnership were interviewed, and data were analyzed using qualitative content analysis. Interviewees discussed the value of involvement in the partnership, including strong relationships, honest discussion of power dynamics, mutual learning, and capacity building. Barriers and facilitators to involvement included access factors (ability to be involved) and participation factors (desire to be involved.) Attention to power dynamics was an important benefit for members, yet culturally-specific organizations faced unique barriers to participation. The findings of this study suggest that future long-term CBPR partnerships should prioritize addressing inequitable logistical barriers to participation, discussing power dynamics and power-sharing, and “centering the margins” by focusing on the needs and interests of culturally-specific organizations.
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Copyright (c) 2022 Helen P. Hailes, MA, MSc, Courtney Colgan, MA, Lisa A. Goodman, PhD, Kristie A. Thomas, PhD
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