Community Engagement & Collaboration Core

Community  engagement  and  implementation  science  are essential  to  the  successful  translation  of interventions  and  other  healthcare  advances  implemented  in  community  settings with  the  ultimate  goal of improving health outcomes. CCTS has been a leader both locally and nationally in the engagement of community partners in all phases of the translational continuum, including serving as one of the hubs highlighted for its community engagement efforts in the 2013 Institute of Medicine report on the CTSA Program.

Given UIC's  emphasis  on  diversity  and  our  strength  in  promoting  health  equity,  we  also  help  advance  the inclusion of diverse stakeholder groups in research teams. The shift towards more team-based, collaborative science requires a culture that values boundary-spanning research activities- in addition to training and resources- that prepare investigators to work productively within the framework of team science.

Mother and child in Pilsen neighborhood

Our Community Engagement & Collaboration Core advises research teams on the critical importance of social determinants of health, embedded in cultural contexts, as major drivers of health outcomes. We infuse the principles of community engagement in all elements of the CCTS, ensuring  that  researchers  actively  consider  cultural  and  contextual  variables  in  their  research  designs  and interventions and that staff are competent and comfortable in working with diverse populations. We also provide  training  to  researchers, staff, community  health  workers,  and  other  stakeholders  to integrate  community  engagement and  implementation  science in  research  and  disseminate findings in culturally-tailored and culturally-relevant ways. Finally, we work to foster collaborations across CTSA hubs and with the municipal public health sector.

Community Engagement Testimonial:

"Although we always strive to put patients first, it was instrumental in my view to be reminded how patients see and feel about our approaches as scientists, and to learn real-life strategies to build trust through empathy and active listening."

- Drs. Anne Boullerne and Natalia Marangoni, Department of Anesthesiology