Researcher readiness for participating in community-engaged dissemination and implementation research: a conceptual framework of core competencies
Participating in community-engaged dissemination and implementation (CEDI) research is challenging for a variety of reasons. Currently, there is not specific guidance or a tool available for researchers to assess their readiness to conduct CEDI research. We propose a conceptual framework that identifies detailed competencies for researchers participating in CEDI and maps these competencies to domains. The framework is a necessary step toward developing a CEDI research readiness survey that measures a researcher’s attitudes, willingness, and self-reported ability for acquiring the knowledge and performing the behaviors necessary for effective community engagement. The conceptual framework for CEDI competencies was developed by a team of eight faculty and staff affiliated with a university’s Clinical and Translational Science Award (CTSA). The authors developed CEDI competencies by identifying the attitudes, knowledge, and behaviors necessary for carrying out commonly accepted CE principles. After collectively developing an initial list of competencies, team members individually mapped each competency to a single domain that provided the best fit. Following the individual mapping, the group held two sessions in which the sorting preferences were shared and discrepancies were discussed until consensus was reached. During this discussion, modifications to wording of competencies and domains were made as needed. The team then engaged five community stakeholders to review and modify the competencies and domains. The CEDI framework consists of 40 competencies organized into nine domains: perceived value of CE in D&I research, introspection and openness, knowledge of community characteristics, appreciation for stakeholder’s experience with and attitudes toward research, preparing the partnership for collaborative decision-making, collaborative planning for the research design and goals, communication effectiveness, equitable distribution of resources and credit, and sustaining the partnership. Delineation of CEDI competencies advances the broader CE principles and D&I research goals found in the literature and facilitates development of readiness assessments tied to specific training resources for researchers interested in conducting CEDI research.