77 Community Engagement and Collaboration | Summary and a Look Ahead

This module presented a high-level introduction to community engagement within the KMb process. The main topics touched on were:

  1. A re-introduction to KMb and the knowledge-to-action gap — focusing on the question “how can content/subject matter and context experts come together to bridge the gap between what is known and what is being done?” This module section pointed to community engagement as a key practice for ensuring that the knowledge-to-action gap is closed with both content/subject matter and context experts collaborating together authentically and respectfully.
  2. The next section of this module dove deeper into what community engagement is — highlighting background research on the need for knowledge exchange and community engaged research (CEnR), and then reviewing various roles communities might take in CEnR and different ways that CEnR might function within the KMb process. At the end of this section of the module you worked your way through the first 10 questions of the module worksheet.
  3. We then revisited the Lavis model for KMb and you were asked to review the model’s five questions with a focus on community engagement and knowledge exchange — looking to external resources on how the community might collaborate within your KMb work.
  4. We then moved on to a non-exhaustive list of key considerations for community engagement work — such as accessibility, EDI, readiness to collaborate, capacity to collaborate, staffing, budget and associated funding opportunities. Throughout this section you were asked to revisit the module worksheet and review the key considerations in the context of your own work.
  5. Next we discussed evaluation of community engagement in KMb, highlighting various resources for examples of how you might be able to evaluate your own community engagement work.
  6. The module concluded with several case studies of community engagement work within research settings.

Next you will be learning about commercialization within KMb and then a module on how to influence policy within your research and KMb work. Throughout the next modules make sure to keep the lens of community engagement at the forefront of this work — asking how, why and when you could integrate the community within this work, and how you would make sure that the engagement was meaningful!

Final Thoughts

A person climbing a mountain

“Without the involvement of everyone, especially affected populations, [decision-makers are] likely to misunderstand the problem, develop ill-fitting solutions, and maintain existing patterns of dominance and privilege”

– Abresch et al., 2021.

You now have the ability authentically engage with your community, meeting them where they are and recognizing the knowledge and different resources that they each bring to your research and KMb process. The tools you have learned can be used as you move ahead through your KMb journey.

In the next unit, we will be looking at how to take the plans we have developed and use social media to share our message and expertise.

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