Why Engage the Community in your Research?

When you engage and collaborate with community partners early on in your project you are able to gather information and data to inform decisions around design, recruitment and dissemination and expand your range of data collection.  Early and ongoing engagement also has the potential to enhance your funding application. These community-academic partnerships also build  expertise that will remain as a resource over time and helps communities use data to address health priorities. 

huddle of people looking down

Despite national efforts led by the NIH and others, research participation remains low for racial/ethnic groups and other groups often underrepresented in research, such as women, older adults, rural residents and lower socioeconomic status populations. Engaging these groups through community-based organizations that represent and serve them will help you include, understand and build trust in communities that can benefit from your research.  

The Community Outreach, Research & Engagement team, including our Community Research Liaisons, who live and work in rural communities, have developed a statewide network of community partners that will help you engage with your population of interest, including underrepresented populations.. 

Our staff can assist with your short-term project needs and with developing long-term community-academic partnerships.   

CORE Services for Researchers Benefits
Develop community engagement goals and identify appropriate approaches in project design phase. Early engagement with a population of interest that has experiential knowledge of a health condition and/or community will enhance the likelihood of your project’s success.
Facilitate introductions & meetings with key stakeholders in Oregon communities. Determine feasibility and appropriateness of the project for the patient population or community group.
Work with a Community Research Liaisons. Develop research opportunities with community partners (e.g., letters of support for grant applications, test materials for recruitment).
Conduct a Community/Patient Engagement Studio or a Community Conversation. Gather specific input, invite new perspectives and/or get feedback on materials to enhance your funding proposal or active study.
Attend a recruitment & retention consult. Understand barriers and challenges related to recruitment and retention (e.g., cultural & linguistic preferences). Form partnerships before starting your project.
Collect data (e.g., conduct focus groups and surveys). Collect community level data to inform a funding application or approach or to answer a research question.