Our Community-based Research Tools

With over 10 years of experience in community based research, we have developed hundreds of hands-on CBR tools for making research inclusive, empowering and equity driven.

Our Centre can provide advisory support and institutional training on CBR to academics as well as community agencies interested in doing CBR. As a way to de-centre research, we strongly advocate for community agencies (community health centres, settlement agencies) to start doing research and/or take a critical approach in how they collaborate on research projects conducted by academics. Please see our presentation on three operational models for building critical research capacity in community agencies. 

As part of our Knowledge to Action Initiative, we trained a group of community members in key knowledge exchange skills, and developed a Guide to Knowledge Translation and Exchange using participatory film-making (PDF 1.8 MB)

Our toolkits can enable research teams to involve historically marginalized and under-represented communities in leadership capacities as co-creators of knowledge and agents of positive change. Our toolkits are used all over world. 

We have two main toolkits:

  1. Community-based Research Toolkit (PDF 3,353 KB)
    This toolkit is for researchers and community agencies. It has hundreds of ready-to-use tools and templates for making the research process more inclusive and collaborative, and for training and engaging non-academic partners (particularly members of communities of interest) in meaningful ways in designing and conducting your study. It includes tools for developing effective “principles of collaboration”, designing research collaboratively, training community members in research, collaborative data analysis framework, project management and budget considerations in CBR and much more.

  2. Everyone Can Do Research Toolkit (PDF 1,258 KB)
    This toolkit is a resource guide for community members/researchers. Grounded on a Popular Education framework (inspired by Paulo Friere), this toolkit helps to build what we refer to as “critical research literacy” among vulnerable and under-represented community members/researchers. It is geared at enabling community groups who are under-represented in research to recognize, strengthen and utilize their lived experience expertise and intrinsic critical thinking/analysis abilities. By exposing fundamental problems in top-down models of research, this toolkit provides a plain-language but critical overview of what research is, where rigor and quality in research really comes from, strengths and limitations of different research methods, and why and how community members can make research more useful and transformative.