201180 Evolution of perceived ownership of an Indigenous community-university partnership: Implications for practice

Monday, November 9, 2009: 3:15 PM

Margaret D. Cargo, PhD , School of Health Sciences, University of South Australia, Adelaide, South Australia, Australia
Treena Delormier, PDt MSc , Faculté de medecine, Université de Montréal, Montréal, QC, Canada
Alex McComber, MEd , Kahnawake Schools Diabetes Prevention Project, Mohawk Nation, QC, Canada
Lucie Lévesque, PhD , School of Kinesiology and Health Studies, Queen's University, Kingston, ON, Canada
Ann C. Macaulay, CM MD FCFP , Department of Family Medicine, McGill University, Montreal, QC, Canada
Self-determination efforts of Indigenous communities require that the participation spectrum of participatory research in public health be expanded to include community ownership of decision making. Objectives: This paper reports on the perceived primary ownership, cross-sectionally, across three stages of the Kahnawake Schools Diabetes Prevention Project (KSDPP). It was hypothesised that Indigenous community partners would be perceived as project owners at each stage. To assess evolution in ownership, the data were explored for linear trends. Methods: Cross-sectional surveys were administered in 1996 (T1), 1999 (T2) and 2004 (T3) representing three project stages of KSDPP – formalisation, mobilisation and maintenance. Self-report questionnaires were distributed to committee members attending project meetings and community representatives supporting the project in periods preceding each survey. Results: KSDPP Staff were identified as primary owners at T1 and T2 and shared ownership with Indigenous Community Advisory Board (CAB) members at T3. Academic researchers were not perceived as primary owners at any time-point. Trends towards greater perceived ownership between T1 and T3 for CAB members and declining KSDPP Staff ownership were statistically significant. Conclusion: KSDPP was owned by one or more Indigenous community partners from the beginning. Decision making, however, evolved with a transfer of ownership from a few staff to the extended community through the organisations, elders and volunteers represented on the CAB. These results support the self-determination of Indigenous community-university partnerships and the expansion of participation in participatory research to reflect community ownership. Results hold important implications for the practice of Indigenous community-university partnerships in public health.

Learning Objectives:
1. Identify the individual, social, cultural and organizational factors that promote community ownership of decision making in participatory research. 2. Analyze the factors that promote community ownership of decision-making for better preparation of future research. 3. Describe the implications of community ownership for the practice of Indigenous community-university partnerships in public health.

Presenting author's disclosure statement:

Qualified on the content I am responsible for because: I have a PhD in Health Care & Epidemiology and 15 years experience conducting participatory research. The submitted abstract is based on research that applies the principles of participatory research in partnership with a Mohawk comunity in Canada (Quebec). The community advisory board has reviewed and approved the attached abstract for submission to APHA.
Any relevant financial relationships? No

I agree to comply with the American Public Health Association Conflict of Interest and Commercial Support Guidelines, and to disclose to the participants any off-label or experimental uses of a commercial product or service discussed in my presentation.