Community-led action research

Community-led action research is where the community decides on the issue to be researched, designs and carries out the research, and makes use of the results to achieve positive change. 

By community-led we mean that a community group or organisation decides to take action on an issue that is important to them. Help might be sought from academics, council officers or organisations like ourselves but it is ultimately the community who decides what they want to find out, how they will do this and why. 

By action we mean anything that leads to positive change in and for that community: it could be a new community amenity, park, service or activity or an improvement to something already happening. 

And by research we simply mean the organised collection of information to create knowledge that is recognised as having value. In community-led action research the community has a greater role in deciding which knowledge has value, which gives the research a validity that traditional forms of research struggle to achieve.

Community-led action research is the bringing together of these components to increase the ability of a community to achieve change.