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ALARA Monograph No 3

Monograph No. 3 (2012)

Donors as stakeholders in Community-Based Participatory Action Research: Praxis as typology in framing their roles

Zermarie Deacon and David Moxley

Recognizing the novelty of community based participatory action research (CBPAR), potential donors may be skeptical of the models, processes, and forms of research this genre incorporates in working with communities and those constituencies that are too often omitted from the governance of research. Participatory forms of action research pose their own resource requirements, which may differ from more traditional forms of social research, particularly in the early stages of inquiry. This monograph explores the impact of the donor perspective, donor types, and corresponding levels of engagement on CBPAR research. Accordingly, the impact that donors have upon the kind of participatory inquiry that is planned and executed is likely taken for granted and never evaluated. This is especially problematic given the value-based nature of CBPAR and its emphasis upon democratic processes in research planning and administration. The application for, and receipt of, external funding may either support or undermine this accepted system of values. Practitioners of CBPAR should be aware of this impact. Conversely, donors may be unaware of the ways in which they can uniquely leverage CBPAR in order to achieve their own social change goals. The principal focus of the proposed monograph is thus to facilitate an awareness of the impact that donors have on CBPAR as well as to outline ways in which donors and participants can better collaborate in order to leverage the potential of this form of inquiry. Following an overview of the CBPAR model and relevant action research methodology we use to advance our understanding of the donor typology, we (a) offer an overview of the four types of donors, (b) consider the influence of each of the four donors on the direction and feasibility of CBPAR, (c) outline implications for working with donors across the continuum of types, and (d) make suggestions for improving the donor-participant collaboration.

Download ALARA Monograph No. 3 - Deacon and Moxley, 2012 (331 KB)

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