Towards Co-Production in Research with Communities


Resource authors: Catherine Durose et al.

Co-production has emerged as a potential solution to a criticism that research conducted in communities often fails to meaningfully include communities in its design and undertaking. Co-production is now also perceived as a solution to an argued “relevance gap” in research and to the demands of “impact”. Co-production in research aims to put principles of empowerment into practice, working “with” communities and offering communities greater control over the research process and providing opportunities to learn and reflect from their experience. Advocates for co-production argue that research is enhanced through including “experiential expertise” (Collins and Evans 2007) which may highlight relevant questions otherwise neglected by “experts” (Fischer 2000). Co-production can enhance the effectiveness of research by making it better informed by communities‟ preferences and needs, with communities then contributing to improved outcomes and achievable solutions (Ostrom 1996). This review takes a cross-cutting perspective, aiming to advance the theory and practice of coproduction in research with communities.

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