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Health Promot Int. 2010 Mar;25(1):115-22. doi: 10.1093/heapro/dap043. Epub 2009 Oct 23.

A call for an international collaboration on participatory research for health.

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Research Group Public Health, Social Science Research Center Berlin, Berlin.


Participatory health research (PHR) has emerged as an important approach for addressing local health issues, including building capacity for health promotion. Increasingly, PHR is drawing the attention of communities, funders, decision-makers and researchers worldwide. It is time to consolidate what we know about PHR in order to secure its place as a source of knowledge and action for public health. This can be achieved through an International Collaboration on Participatory Research for Health to addresses the following issues:Set a framework in which information can be exchanged, decisions can be reached and information can be disseminated on central issues in PHR. Provide an international forum to discuss standards and quality. Produce guidelines for researchers, practitioners and community members. Synthesize the findings of PHR internationally. Formulate recommendations regarding generalizable findings. Similar to the Cochrane Collaboration on clinical trials research, the PHR Collaboration will be dependent on a host of experts from various countries to bring together what we know about PHR and to make that knowledge accessible to an international audience. Unlike the Cochrane Collaboration, the PHR Collaboration will include both quantitative and qualitative research approaches. The goal of the PHR Collaboration will not be able to achieve a standardization of research protocols, but rather to find meaningful ways to judge the quality of PHR and to report on its findings while respecting the variety of locally based approaches to research design, data collection and interpretation.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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