Community–University Partnerships for Research and Practice: Application of an Interactive and Contextual Model of Collaboration

Heather J. Williamson, Belinda-Rose Young, Nichole Murray, Donna L. Burton, Bruce Lubotsky Levin, Oliver Tom Massey, Julie A. Baldwin


Community–university partnerships are frequently used to enhance translational research efforts while benefiting the community. However, challenges remain in evaluating such efforts. This article discusses the utility of applying the contextual and interactive model of community–university collaboration to a translational research education program, the Institute for Translational Research in Adolescent Behavioral Health, to guide programmatic efforts and future evaluations. Institute stakeholders from academia and the community completed in-depth interviews querying their expectations and experiences in this collaboration. Key quotes and themes were extracted and analyzed based on the constructs within the 3 phases of the model. The findings note specific themes for future evaluations. Overall, the contextual and interactive model of community–university collaboration proved a useful framework to guide the process evaluation of the Institute. Findings suggest possible strategies for the successful development, evaluation, and sustainability of community–university partnerships.

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