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Developing quality criteria for Participatory Health Research: An agenda for action


  • Springett, Jane
  • Wright, Michael T.
  • Roche, Brenda


Participatory Health Research (PHR) builds on a long and diverse history drawn from a range of disciplines, each of which have informed and developed their own understanding of what participatory research practice is. However, just as with qualitative methods ten to fifteen years ago, there is an increasing interest in setting out the fundamental principles that should drive the assessment of quality within PHR. While those using participatory research methods in health have often called for a review of quality criteria, to date there has not been anything published that undertakes the same substantive systematic attempt as found in qualitative research and evaluation. This paper starts the process of agenda setting on quality criteria by describing some key notions/issues that are core to PHR and relevant for developing steps for action, drawing together some key literature. The paper arose from the work of the International Collaboration on Participatory Health Research (ICHPR). Through consolidating existing knowledge and reaching agreement on common terminology and principles, the ICHPR seeks to strengthen the role of PHR in intervention design and decision-making on health issues. This includes developing guidelines for conducting and evaluating PHR, describing which forms of theory and evidence are produced by this approach, and finding a means for conducting systematic reviews of the PHR literature in order to contribute to the body of interna-tional knowledge on community health.

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  • Springett, Jane & Wright, Michael T. & Roche, Brenda, 2011. "Developing quality criteria for Participatory Health Research: An agenda for action," Discussion Papers, Research Group Public Health SP I 2011-302, WZB Berlin Social Science Center.
  • Handle: RePEc:zbw:wzbhea:spi2011302

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    1. Blackstock, K.L. & Kelly, G.J. & Horsey, B.L., 2007. "Developing and applying a framework to evaluate participatory research for sustainability," Ecological Economics, Elsevier, vol. 60(4), pages 726-742, February.
    2. Marleen Maarleveld & Constant Dabgbégnon, 1999. "Managing natural resources: A social learning perspective," Agriculture and Human Values, Springer;The Agriculture, Food, & Human Values Society (AFHVS), vol. 16(3), pages 267-280, September.
    3. Parker, E. & Margolis, L.H. & Eng, E. & Henríquez-Roldán, C., 2003. "Assessing the capacity of health departments to engage in community-based participatory public health," American Journal of Public Health, American Public Health Association, vol. 93(3), pages 472-476.
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