Global consortium to train community-based researchers

Budd Hall, professor of Community Development with UVic’s School of Public Administration, and Rajesh Tandon, Founding President of Participatory Research in Asia (PRIA), are UNESCO co-chairs in Community Based Research and Social Responsibility in Higher Education. Now entering a second four-year term, Hall and Tandon will continue their work assisting countries around the world to build knowledge societies through training in CBR.

To move their work forward -- training young researchers at the local level -- Hall and Tandon launched a multi-partner global consortium. Knowledge for Change (K4C) was unveiled in New Delhi in November and in Ottawa in December 2017.

Here, the Canadian Commission for UNESCO and UVic discussed their plans to enable local CBR training hubs in Brazil, India, South Africa, Uganda, Ghana, Indonesia, Europe, and Canada. The Ottawa event featured seven keynote speakers including Sebastien Goupil, Secretary General for the Canadian Commission for UNESCO, and David Castle, UVic’s VP of Research.

“It’s essential for us to share the good work we are doing here at UVic and internationally, to explore the potential of relevant research,” said Hall, who moderated the Ottawa event. UVic is seen as a world leader in CBR, says Hall, through its support of UNESCO’s global agenda.

The 21-week training program will begin in January 2018 with 25 learners from Canada, Indonesia, Italy and India. Hall and Tandon will teach the first cohort. Research will be based on local needs such as sanitation, water pollution, waste disposal – all real-life problems that can be framed and shared as case studies for policy-making.

“The overall perspective here,” says Tandon, “is one of making democracy work for all through knowledge and research – be it within local governance, local culture, or through active citizenship.”

Read: UVic News