A retrospective on the vision for Progress in Community Health Partnerships: Research, education, and action

Milton Mickey Eder, Jessica Holzer, Karen Calhoun, Larkin L. Strong

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

4 Scopus citations


The organizers founded Progress in Community Health Partnerships with a commitment to improving our understanding of community-based participatory research (CBPR) and its use in community–academic/institutional health partnerships. Following Rogers’s Diffusion of Innovations, they reasoned that expanded adoption would occur through academic and community partner recognition of CBPR’s relative advantage over previous approaches; its compatibility with the values, past experience and needs of potential adopters; its ease of understanding and use; its capacity for experimentation and refinement; and its production of observable results. We now assess the journal’s progress toward realizing the vision, as well as issues and problems the organizers identified. We map the journal’s content over its first decade onto the initial vision by examining the record of submissions and publications across the eight types of articles and the journal’s record of rejections and publications. In remembering that Rogers’s study of innovations requires both technical and social change, we discuss the difference between understanding how to do something and actually putting an innovation into action that becomes standard practice at both individual and systemic levels. We observe that the large number of Original Research and Works-in-Progress/Lessons Learned manuscripts, submitted and published, reflect traditional expectations for faculty research productivity. We suggest that sustainability, which rated of lower importance within the initial vision, has gained in importance among community and academic partners; however, it will gain added attention only with changed university expectations of researchers. We further suggest that the study of partnerships involved in researching and improving public health should be expanded beyond the current focus on CBPR.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1-11
Number of pages11
JournalProgress in Community Health Partnerships: Research, Education, and Action
Issue number1
StatePublished - Mar 1 2017

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
This work was supported in part by the NIH Clinical and Translational Science Award at the University of Minnesota: UL1TR000114, the University of Michigan: UL1TR000433, and the American Cancer Society (MRSG-13-145-01). The content is solely the responsibility of the authors and does not necessarily represent the official views of either funder.

Publisher Copyright:
© 2017 Johns Hopkins University Press.


  • Community health partnerships
  • Community health research
  • Health partnerships
  • Health services research
  • Participatory action research


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