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Meaningful community engagement can take several forms, from culturally responsive outreach to community-based participatory research. The key to effectively and respectfully engaging with local and indigenous communities is to:
- Recognize the diversity among them.
- Ask, why would this engagement benefit both parties? The best way to find the answer is to learn directly from the community members their needs, but mostly their interests. Avoid adopting any “savior” attitude and try to develop honest relationships recognizing that as a researcher, there is also a lot to learn.
- Be flexible and open to complexity and ambiguity. Clear and constant communication is fundamental.
The Stanford’s Haas Center for Public Service: Supports Stanford’s members interested in public service and community engagement through different resources.
- Arnott, J. C., Neuenfeldt, R. J., & Lemos, M. C. (2020). Co-producing science for sustainability: can funding change knowledge use?. Global Environmental Change, 60, 101979.
- Balazs, C. L., & Morello-Frosch, R. (2013). The three Rs: How community-based participatory research strengthens the rigor, relevance, and reach of science. Environmental justice, 6(1), 9-16.
- Latulippe, N., & Klenk, N. (2020). Making room and moving over: knowledge co-production, Indigenous knowledge sovereignty and the politics of global environmental change decision-making. Current Opinion in Environmental Sustainability, 42, 7-14.
- Suarez‐Balcazar, Y. (2020). Meaningful engagement in research: Community residents as co‐creators of knowledge. American Journal of Community Psychology, 65(3-4), 261-271.
- Smylie, J., Marsden, N., Star, L., Gahagan, J., Zarowsky, C., Mykhalovskiy, E., ... & Potvin, L. (2020). Requirement for meaningful engagement of First Nations, Inuit, Métis, and Indigenous Peoples in publications about them. Canadian Journal of Public Health, 111(6), 826-830.
- Tuck, E., & Yang, K. W. (2012). Decolonization is not a metaphor. Decolonization: Indigeneity, education & society, 1(1).
- Best practices in community engaged teaching: A website from Vanderbilt University that includes tips as well as additional resources. They published Principles of Ethical and Effective Service
- Community-based Research Templates: A series of documents created by the Indigenous Wellness Research Institute at University of Washington, especially oriented to those interested in collaborating with indigenous communities.
- Ethics Hub: A platform for sharing tools and experiences related to research involving indigenous and local communities.