Recommendations for establishing and maintaining successful researcher-practitioner collaborations

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The paper is divided into many short sections covering: the background and goals of this piece; reasons for practitioners and victim advocates to collaborate with researchers and what strengths each bring to a collaboration; what type of research practitioners want and how researchers and the research benefit from practitioner insights; some characteristics and eight tips for successful collaborative relationships; main ways to initiate collaborative practitioner-research relationships; six tips for assessing the qualifications of researchers; things to consider when assessing the adequacy of the research including the importance of peer review; ten questions that practitioners and advocates will likely want the researcher to answer before any collaboration; and, tips to help researchers identify practitioner collaborators.

Other topics covered include: ethics, confidentiality and safety issues; eight things to consider when disseminating findings; Memorandums of Understanding (MOU) or other ways to clearly state roles and responsibilities; and considerations when seeking funding to support such collaborations.

Practitioners and victim advocates said they want research that will:

  • Improve victim outreach and community education efforts.
  • Determine what is best for client services.
  • Identify new problems, new directions and new solutions in efforts to eliminate violence against women. [p.3 ]

 

Established in 1998, the National Violence Against Women Prevention Research Center (NVAWPRC) consists of "a consortium of researchers and practitioners concerned with violence against women. One of the most important goals of the NVAWPRC is to identify and overcome barriers to collaboration between researchers, victim advocates, public health professionals, criminal justice professionals, and violence against women practitioners." Sources for this piece included: NVAWPRC 1999 focus groups with victim advocates, practitioners, and researchers; informal discussions at conferences and workshops; author and center staff experiences as researchers and practitioners; and, other cited published resources.