Scientist-Community Partnerships

Additional Tools and Resources

Published Sep 23, 2015 Updated Oct 4, 2023

A toolkit for successful partnerships

To help scientists engage more effectively in their communities, we've updated our 16-page guide that explains some of the benefits and challenges of community partnerships and offers specific advice for finding partnership opportunities, building relationships with community groups, and overcoming barriers to successful collaboration.

Below are links to other helpful UCS online resources, as well as to various organizations and agencies that have created helpful resources for both scientists and community members.

Partnership building principles and frameworks

Union of Concerned Scientists: Building Community-Academic Partnerships
UCS convened a broad array of stakeholders to discuss institutional inequities and injustices in the food system. This webpage includes frameworks for building respectful and trusted partnerships that value scientific and community knowledge and experience.

Building Community Resilience: Lessons From Frontline Leaders
This paper summarizes the climate impacts, adaptation measures, and resilience experiences that a diverse group of frontline community organizers raised at the Fifth National Adaptation Forum in 2022.

National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences: Successful Models of Community-Based Participatory Research
This summary report looks at various examples of community-based participatory research through a public health lens, with a focus on partnership building, processes, and evaluation.

Engaging Scientists and Engineers in Policy Coalition
This coalition of scientific and engineering societies has curated resources and opportunities for scientists and technical experts who are interested in exploring the policy side of community engagement.

Environmental Justice Section of the Ecological Society of America
This diverse group of ecologists is committed to promoting and facilitating the involvement of all ecologists in advancing environmental justice through education, research, and public engagement.

Community Science Framework and Discussion Guide of the Association of Science and Technology Centers
This framework provides a guiding light and concrete strategies for practitioners and leaders to build on as they adopt and adapt community science locally.

Community Science Resources from the AGU Thriving Earth Exchange
The Thriving Earth Exchange offers resources to support scientists and project teams interested in community science.

Community Science Exchange
This platform supports and advances the diverse and growing group of people who do community science, creating a space for sharing community-relevant scientific results and disseminating and recognizing the diverse outputs of community science.

Jemez Principles for Democratic Organizing
These principles offer guidance on how to work with environmental justice organizations.

Principles of Environmental Justice
Drafted and adopted in 1991 at the National People of Color Environmental Leadership Summit, these principles serve as a guidepost for the environmental justice movement.

Guidance for Federal Departments and Agencies on Indigenous Knowledge

The White House Office of Science and Technology Policy and Council on Environmental Quality drafted Guidance for Federal Departments and Agencies on Indigenous Knowledge. The guidance, and accompanying implementation memorandum, recognized that in order to make the best scientific and policy decisions possible, the Federal government should value and, as appropriate, respectfully include Indigenous Knowledge.

Third-party connectors

Improving communication skills

Scientists as Stronger Community Partners

Watch a playlist of videos including two webinars from UCS and Coming Clean (a collaborative of environmental health and justice experts that promotes human health, environmental protection, and economic fairness): “Hear Me Out: Making Meaningful Connections through Storytelling” and “Step Out of the Silo: Science through a Community and Social Justice Lens.”

Storytelling to Make Meaningful Connections and Science More Inclusive
Mónica I. Feliú-Mójer, vice-director of Ciencia Puerto Rico and program manager for iBiology, offers a robust collection of storytelling and science-communication resources.

Language Justice Toolkit
Members from the Colectivo Flatlander, Highlander Research & Education Center, and the Praxis Project have developed this resource for anyone who is committed to building movements where people can communicate across languages.

Countering Disinformation in Your Community
This guide provides information, pathways, and tools to take meaningful, effective action to counter disinformation.

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