Community Resource Handbook

March 18, 2022


Traditional research does not always prioritize community collaboration. Community-engaged research (CER) places academic and community partnership at the heart of research work. Bringing together these partnerships—which include different sets of priorities, experiences and skills—is not a straightforward or quick process. It takes time to build equitable and reciprocal relationships. By allowing communities to co-create knowledge, community-engaged research can build capacity for imagination, and enhance the capacity of communities to advocate for their own well-being.

We invite you to join us in this work and use this handbook to consider how community-engaged research can enhance how to evaluate, describe, interpret and care for our shared world. Our intention with this handbook is to offer readers a practical and accessible guide for community-engaged research. But it is just that: an offering. It is not a definitive guide or a prescriptive checklist. We recognize that the beauty and complexity of many CER projects lie in their unique contexts and imaginative approaches. 

It provides a fresh look at why CER matters as we take stock of our roles in a rapidly changing society. This how-to guide walks you through the process of community-engaged research and shows its value to communities and the people working alongside them.

What's in this guide?

This handbook explains key facets of CER, highlighting CER research from SFU.

Inside you'll find:

  • Fundamentals and ethical principles of community-engaged research
  • Participatory research methods use in CER projects
  • Challenges and key considerations of doing CER
  • Steps for planning a CER project

and much more!

This handbook explores how co-creating knowledge with communities can build capacity for re-imagination in research. We hope it will also enhance communities' capacity to advocate for their own well-being.

We hope it sparks your curiosity to explore new research horizons.

Who is this guide for?

The Community Resource Handbook is intended for community-serving organizations including, but not limited to, community groups, not-for-profit organizations, public and private foundations, and local, provincial and federal government agencies. It is designed to help community organizations gain a practical understanding of community-engaged research and to provide a guiding framework for developing a CER project.

This handbook can also be useful for students, early-career researchers and anyone who is curious about using research to advance community interests.

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