New report on effective collaboration between academics and community organisations

Report coverUniversity of Manchester reseachers Dr Jaime Garcia Iglesias, Professor Brian Heaphy and Dr Neta Yodovich who work on the Dating App Connections project have been collaborating with Harvey Kennedy-Pitt and his colleagues at Black Beetle Health, a community public health organisations. The aim of the partnership was to share research skills and knowledge across academia and community-based health work.

A new report, Collaboration for change: Exploring effective collaboration between academics and community organisations, shares these findings. The report sets out seven key areas to consider, in order to support effective collaboration. They are: capacity, remuneration, empowerment, upskilling, mutual growth or benefit, transparency and trust and stakeholders. We outline the experiences, expectations, benefits and challenges of collaborative projects.

The report includes five principles for effective projects:

  1. Co-production – working together across all stages of the project.
  2. Mutual benefit – making sure that all people and organisations involved benefit in some way eg skills training, public recognition, financial benefit.
  3. Transparency and trust – clear and open communication is a fundamental principle for effective collaboration.
  4. Accessibility – addressing and removing barriers to participation by considering the audience and their needs.
  5. Cultural appropriateness – a sensitive, intersectional approach to the project is important to ensure the research considers diverse cultural perspectives.

The workshop was part of a collaborative partnership funded by the University of Manchester School of Social Science Community Partnership Fund which allowed for staff at Black Beetle Health to be seconded to the Dating App Connections research team, contributing to research activities and receiving training in research skills

The Dating App Connections project is exploring lesbian, gay, bisexual, trans (LGBT+) and heterosexual people’s use of dating apps to negotiate intimate relationships during and after COVID-19 lockdowns and social distancing. The project is funded by the Economic and Social Research Council.

For project updates