Knowledge is Power

The importance of community-led action research in Scotland

Community-led action research is not research for the sake of it, to prove a theory or to satisfy the curious. It is about people asking their own questions about the issues they experience, getting the information, and evidence they need, and testing actions for change.'

Starting in 2017, SCDC and the Poverty Alliance worked with ten community organisations to co-design a resource framework which could be used to support communities across Scotland to conduct their own inquiries into the issues affecting them.  

You can download the report here. Kate McHendry, Development Manager at SCDC, has also reflected on her work using community-led action research and the findings of this new report.

The key recommendations of the report are to:

  • Establish a new cross sector alliance to co-ordinate and manage the resource

  • Create a locus for access to practical resources, and for centralising research evidence

  • Develop a cohort of skilled practitioners and trainers in action research, drawn from community organisations across Scotland

  • Establish a fund for communities to pay for participation costs associated with their inquiries

  • Develop a peer led learning network

  • Create spaces and opportunities for communities and decision makers to share and deliberate research findings as a way of informing local actions and national priorities

SCDC and the Poverty Alliance will now be approaching funders with the primary objective of securing start up and development costs. 

In the meantime, if you have any comments on the report, or want to help us turn these ideas into action, we would be delighted to hear from you! 

You can also download an executive summary here

Please contact robin.jamieson@scdc.org.uk or kate.mchendry@scdc.org.uk.

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