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Key Ideas for the Research-Practitioner Partnership

NCJ Number
Date Published
February 2017
2 pages
Since the federal Byrne Criminal Justice Innovation Program (BCJI) promotes partnerships between criminal justice researchers and practitioners in analyzing crime problems and implementing effective interventions, this paper presents suggestions for building a strong and effective researcher-practitioner partnership.
One suggestion pertains to choosing a research partner. The recommendation is to engage a research team with different strengths that cover qualitative and quantitative research experience and a range of disciplines, such as criminal justice, business/economics, social work, or geography. A second suggestion is to set clear roles and responsibilities. This means collaboratively assigning responsibility for such tasks as data collection, information distribution, and conflict management. A third suggestion is to use the planning phase of BCJI to build strong communication tracks, determine responsibilities, and outline accountability. A fourth suggestion is to foster an expansive community relationship among partners that understands the distinctive expertise and knowledge researchers provide as input for collaborative decisions. A fifth suggestion is to avoid research jargon in presentations and discussions at collaborative community events attended by residents and practitioners. A sixth suggestion is to cultivate flexibility between community and research partners as roles and responsibilities emerge based on knowledge, skill, and experience. The concluding suggestion is for research partners in academic institutions to establish a beneficial relationship between the university and BCJI activities. Four website resources are listed.