Toolkits and Guides

AAPCHO Community-Based Participatory Research Handbook is a toolkit for community health centers that serve Asian Americans, Native Hawaiians, and Pacific Islanders.

Assessing Communication for Social Change’s Equal Access and Participatory Monitoring Toolkit aims to help communication for development organizations to demonstrate the impacts and outcomes of their initiatives, listen to their audience, continuously learn, and feed this learning back into the organization and its practices.

Access Alliance Community Based Research Toolkit is designed for people and institutions interested in doing research using community based research principles.

Core Values For Public Participation.  IAP2 has developed the “IAP2 Core Values for Public Participation” for use in the development and implementation of public participation processes.

Participatory Action Research Toolkit.  from Durham University provides guidance on what a PAR project commonly looks like, how to work together, and some questions to ask as you go.

Handbook for Participatory Action Research, Planning and Evaluation  This guide, written by Jacques M Chevalier and Daniel J Buckles for Participatory Action Research, provides a set of tools and processes that can be used to engage people in complex settings with a range of stakeholders.

Research for Organizing  This toolkit was designed for organizations and individuals that want to use participatory action research (PAR) to support their work towards social justice.  It was developed by the Urban Justice Center in New York City and various grassroots organizations.

Save the Children’s a Kit of Tools for Participatory Research and Evaluation with Children, Young People and Adults is a compilation of tools used during a Thematic Evaluation and Documentation on Children’s Participation in Armed Conflict, Post Conflict and Peace Building.

Useful Tools for Engaging Young People in Participatory Evaluation  is a toolkit developed as part of a formative evaluation by the UNICEF Regional Office of young people’s participation in the CEE/CIS region in 2005.

Associations and Networks

Action Research  Network of the Americas unites college and university students and faculty conducting practitioner inquiry into teaching and learning with fellow action researchers in schools, community settings, and workplaces.

Collaborative Action Research Network is a aims to encourage and support action research projects and contribute to its theory and methodology.

Community-Campus Partnerships for Health is a nonprofit membership organization that promotes health equity and social justice through partnerships between communities and academic institutions.

Division 27 of the American Psychological Association is an international organization devoted to advancing theory, research, and social action.

Urban Research Network (URBAN) is a multidisciplinary, distributed network of scholars and practitioners committed to articulating and strengthening the collaborative methods and impact, sharing findings, raising the  visibility, developing career pathways and increasing the acceptance within the academy, of community-based research.

Centers and Institutes

Cornell Participatory Action Research Network.  was founded in 1992 and continues to foster robust discussion on action research at Cornell and beyond.

Groundswell is a network of oral historians, activists, cultural workers, community organizers, and documentary artists that use oral history to further movement building and transformative social change.

The Highlander Center is the grandfather of popular education and participatory action research organizations (founded in 1932). Highlander was a mainstay of the Civil Rights Movement in the US, and continues to provide training and support for participatory action research and social change.

International Association for Public Participation is an international association of members who seek to promote and improve the practice of public participation in relation to individuals, governments, institutions, and other entities that affect the public interest in nations throughout the world.

International Collaboration for Community Health Research strengthens the role of participatory health research in intervention design and decision-making on health issues.

Institute of Community Research is a non-profit research institute to develop research partnerships and conduct applied and action research with communities and organizations in New England and beyond.

The International Center for Tropical Agriculture provides information on the use of local action research groups to improve the lives of farmers and others in Latin America.

Participate Initiative aims to embed participatory research in global policy-making it is a network of 18 participatory research organizations working with poor and marginalized groups in 29 countries.

Participatory Narrative Institute a membership organization for people who seek to improve the methods and tools of participatory narrative inquiry.

Participatory Research in Asia an international center for learning and promotion of citizen participation and democratic governance. 

The Public Science Project is a New York based organization that conducts and supports participatory action research with a commitment to the significant knowledge people hold about their lives and experiences and a belief that those most intimately impacted by research should take the lead in shaping research questions, framing interpretations, and designing meaningful products and actions.

Research to Action (R2A) is an initiative catering for the strategic and practical needs of people trying to improve the way development research is communicated and utilised.

Youth Participatory Politics Research Network is focused on conceptualizing and examining the implications of the rise of new media for the practice of politics and for youth civic and political development, and on analyzing the quantity, quality, and equality of youth engagement in participatory politics.

Other Resources

Action and Reflection: A guide for monitoring and evaluating participatory research.  This paper from the International Development Research Centre (IDRC) was designed to support those involved in participatory research and development projects with monitoring and evaluation strategies.

Canadian Journal of Action Research is a freely accessible, full-text, peer-reviewed electronic journal intended for elementary, secondary, and university teachers who are concerned with exploring the unity between educational research and practice.

A Foot in Both Worlds  Institutionalizing Progressive Community-­Engaged Research Centers within Universities is report that explores the relationship between universities and the public through the recent development of progressive community-engaged research centers.

Community Based Participatory Research Principles.  Detroit Community Academic Urban Research Center has written one of the best outlines of an approach to research that equitably involves community members, organizational representatives, and researchers in all aspects of the research process and in which all partners contribute expertise and share decision making and ownership.

Community-based Participatory Research: Ethical Challenges.   This paper from the Durham University Centre for Social Justice and Community Action outlines the findings of a scoping study examining ethical issues in community-based participatory research based on a literature search and the deliberations of a co-inquiry action research group.

Journal of Public Deliberation is a peer reviewed, open access journal with the principal objective of synthesizing the research, opinion, projects, experiments and experiences of academics and practitioners in the multi-disciplinary field of “deliberative democracy.”

Participatory Methods provides resources to generate ideas and action for inclusive development and social change.  It focuses on participatory approaches to program design, monitoring and evaluation; to learning, research and communication in organizations, networks and communities; and to citizen engagement in political processes.

Participatory Research Meets the IRB. In 2006, a number of American and British participatory researchers frustrated by ethics committees found themselves discussing the problem at meetings of the the Association of American Geographers and the Royal Geographical Society/Institute of British Geographers. The result was a special thematic issue (volume 6, number 3, 2007) of ACME: An International E-Journal for Critical Geographies.

Scholarly and Research Communication.   Special Issue: Community-Based Participatory Research. Vol 5, No 3 (2014)


Action Research.  The ARJ blog is the web log for the print publication Action Research, which is a forum for the development of the theory and practice of action research.

Research Impact is a pan-Canadian network of 11 universities committed to maximizing the impact of academic research for the social, economic, environmental and health benefits of Canadians. RIR is committed to developing institutional capacities to support knowledge mobilization by developing and sharing knowledge mobilization best practices, services and tools.