New Faculty

Introduction to Community-Engaged Research at VCU

Our Philosophy

Research WITH communities for the betterment of society, not merely research ON communities for the betterment of science.

Advocates assert that community-engaged research promotes better research and translation of findings. Other benefits of community-engaged research  include development of research that is responsive to community need, increased capacity built through partnerships, expanded funding opportunities, and greater opportunities to translate findings into practice. (Adapted from Carnegie and CDC, 2015)

Community-engaged research can be quantitative, qualitative and/or mixed methods.

  • Community-based, participatory research
  • Applied research
  • Contractual research (funded by government, non-governmental organizations or business)
  • Demonstration projects
  • Needs and assets assessments
  • Program evaluations

What does community-engaged research look like?

  • Community stakeholders on project steering committees and other deliberative and decision-making bodies
  • Community advisory boards
  • Compensation for the community‚Äôs time and other contributions
  • Dissemination of results back out to the community
  • Takes time, collaboration and flexibility

What does community-engaged research is NOT

  • Focus groups or interviews
  • A research methodology
  • An add-on
  • A one-size fits all approach
  • Appropriate for all research
  • Recruitment of minority research participants
  • A relinquishing of all insight or control by researchers