What is Community-Based Participatory Research?

February 13, 2012
Merith Weisman

Community-Based Participatory Research (CBPR) by definition, is a "collaborative approach to research that equitably involves all partners in the research process and recognizes the unique strengths that each brings. CBPR begins with a research topic of importance to the community, has the aim of combining knowledge with action and achieving social change." Community-based research takes place in community settings and involves community members in the design and implementation of research projects, demonstrates respect for the contributions of success that are made by community partners, as well as respect for the principle of "doing no harm" to the communities involved. In order to achieve these goals, the following principles should guide the development of research projects involving collaboration between the researchers and community partners, whether the community partners are formally structured community-based organizations or informal groups of individual community members.

Principles of Community Based-Research:

  • It is a collaborative enterprise between researchers (professors and/or students) and community members. It engages university faculty, students and staff with diverse partners and community members.
  • It validates multiple sources of knowledge and promotes the use of multiple methods of discovery and of dissemination or the knowledge produced.
  • It has as its goal: social action and social change for the purpose of achieving social justice.
  • More information on Community-Based Participatory Research can be found on our website.

source: http://depts.washington.edu/ccph/commbas.html

There are many forms of community engaged scholarship. To learn more about others, please check this out. If you are a community partner and have a research project you think a faculty member or research class can help with, or a faculty member or student looking for a community partner for your research or other scholarship please contact us at cce@sonoma.edu. Faculty are invited to the annual CBPR workshop. Check the calendar for more details.