From practice to theory
The idea for this toolkit came from a real project in collaborative research performed in five countries on the sensitive question of disclosure of HIV serostatus. As well as investigating
disclosure, the ANRS 12244 Partages study led us to closely examine the various issues of community-based research (CBR). The study was designed and implemented through close
partnership between member organizations of Coalition PLUS (in Ecuador, France, Mali,Morocco, Canada, the Democratic Republic of the Congo and Romania) and universities
from each of these countries.
Why the need for a practical and methodological toolkit?
In the world of research on HIV/AIDS, recent developments in issues surrounding prevention and care (PrEP, treatment as prevention, social aspects of HIV/AIDS) as well as international
strategic objectives, have led to an ever-increasing interest in what is called “community-based research” or, put more generally, academic/community partnerships in research. It would seem clear that research cannot make progress on these issues without the genuine involvement of communities in research studies and intervention trials. Researchers and stakeholders from community-based organizations (CBOs) can collaborate together in the best possible conditions capitalizing on the work being carried out in ever-increasing numbers of CBR projects. Indeed, the issues raised by this type of research go beyond the questions, challenges and obstacles usually met when implementing “academic” research studies. A growing number of researchers and community stakeholders are searching for ways and practical tools which can help them work together.