Online Program

: Fitting a square peg into a round hole: Lessons learned from a community-based participatory research project

Wednesday, November 6, 2013 : 12:45 p.m. - 1:00 p.m.

Maghboeba Mosavel, Ph.D., Department of Social and Behavioral Health, Virginia Commonwealth University, School of Medicine, Richmond, VA
Michelle Laws, MA, PhD student, Department of Social and Behavioral Health, VCU School of Medicine, Department of Social and Behavioral Health, Richmond, VA
BACKGROUND: The importance of engaging communities at every stage of the research process is gaining widespread acceptance as a best practice within the research academy. Central to the leading community-research paradigms i.e. referenced as Community-based Participatory Research (CBPR), Participatory Action Research (PAR), or Community-Engaged Research —is the premise that community members in their privileged status as “insiders” can offer novel and deeper insights into the ethos of target communities that may be blind spots for academic researchers. While both the academic researcher and community are willing to embrace this new and necessary partnership to advance research knowledge and outcomes, are they ready? We will present the lessons learned from two studies that used the CBPR framework to improve health outcomes among historically marginalized populations—one US based study and another international “Global Bridges” project conducted in Durban, South Africa. Methods: Data collected through mixed-methods CBPR studies including focus groups, community surveys and semi-structured interviews with users of a community health clinic will be presented and discussed. Findings: The challenges we will highlight based on the findings from our research will include how the current IRB review process can present challenges to the more dynamic and fluid process of CBPR; and the importance of balancing power and promoting research climates that foster mutual respect of academic as well as community insights. The findings will include perspectives from university students as well as youth (aged 14 to 18) recruited as community researchers in the Global Bridges project.

Learning Areas:

Administer health education strategies, interventions and programs
Diversity and culture
Implementation of health education strategies, interventions and programs
Planning of health education strategies, interventions, and programs
Social and behavioral sciences

Learning Objectives:
Describe the process of engaging community members in the US and Durban South Africa in a CBPR research project designed to improve health outcomes of historically marginalized populations. Identify the challenges and effective responses to the IRB process and institutional practices that may constrain and conflict with the principles of CBPR and the expectations of communities. Discuss strategies to better prepare both communities and academic researchers to design, implement and evaluate CBPR research models that improve effectiveness.

Presenting author's disclosure statement:

Qualified on the content I am responsible for because: In addition to my educational training and credentialing, I have more than 20 years of experience working as a social and behavioral scientist in the areas of health disparities and community-based participatory research. I currently serve and have served on multiple NIH funded research projects as the PI and co-investigator. I have published more than 40 peer-reviewed articles and presented at numerous conferences both within the US and abroad.
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.