Recently the success of a community-university research partnership to address environmental justice issues in low-income African-American communities was highlighted by a premier scientific journal of community-based participatory research (CBPR). The title of the new journal is “Progress in Community Health Partnerships: Research, Education, and Action” (PCHP) and is published by the John’s Hopkins University Press in Baltimore, MD.
PCHP featured two articles and one podcast interview transcript detailing this partnership in the inaugural year of the journal. The first article by Sacoby M. Wilson et al., entitled “Use of EPA Collaborative Problem-Solving Model to Obtain Environmental Justice in North Carolina”, reports the work-in-progress and lessons learned of the environmental justice partnership between the West End Revitalization Association (WERA) in Mebane, NC, the UNC School of Public Health, the US Environmental Protection Agency, and other organizations.
The second article by Christopher D. Heaney et al., entitled “The West End Revitalization Association’s Community-Owned and -Managed Research Model: Development, Implementation, and Action”, highlights the methodologic approach and theory behind WERA’s new model of community-owned and-managed research (COMR) by comparing the goals of COMR to the those of traditional university-managed research endeavors. In each issue of the journal, PCHP selects one article for more in-depth discussion via a podcast transcript interview. WERA’s COMR paper by Heaney et al., was chosen for the podcast transcript interview and provides more details about the organizational capacity needed by community-based organizations to implement COMR, the current funding situation for COMR, and the how to develop and sustain relationships with university partners while at the same time impacting policy and solving local environmental justice problems.