Journal of Community Psychology

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Community–academic partnerships in implementation research

  • Author(s): Melanie Pellecchia, David S. Mandell, Heather J. Nuske, Gazi Azad, Courtney Benjamin Wolk, Brenna B. Maddox, Erica M. Reisinger, Laura C. Skriner, Danielle R. Adams, Rebecca Stewart, Trevor Hadley, Rinad S. Beidas
  • Published 06 Apr 2018
  • DOI: 10.1002/jcop.21981


Community–academic partnerships(CAPs) are a critical component of implementing and sustaining evidence‐based practices (EBPs) in community settings; however, the approaches used and mechanisms of change within CAPs have not been rigorously studied. The first step to advancing the science of CAP is to operationally define and contextualize the approaches used in CAP as part of the implementation process. Our research group has gleaned valuable lessons about the best ways to develop, support, and nurture community partnerships within the context of implementation. In this article, we share these lessons learned and relate them to implementation strategies that are most relevant to community‐partnered implementation endeavors. The implementation strategies most relevant to CAPs are as follows: (a) building a coalition, (b) conducting local consensus discussions, (c) identifying barriers and facilitators to implementation, (d) facilitating interactive problem solving, (e) using an advisory board or workgroup, (f) tailoring strategies, (g) promoting adaptability, and (h) auditing and providing feedback. We offer suggestions for future research to systematically evaluate these strategies, with an eye toward advancing the science of CAP and implementation science and the goal of guiding future research and improving the implementation of EBPs in community settings.

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