A more flexible and equitable Kris Nelson Community-Based Research program application process

In February, we announced that we would not be issuing an open call for projects this summer, in an effort to be more thoughtful and strategic about our work. Since then, we have spent time working to establish more equitable and flexible processes around our application process, project selection criteria, program evaluation, and communication with partners. Important changes to the program include:

  • Year-Round Availability of Kris Nelson Application: We've opted to keep the Kris Nelson application open year-round, offering organizations greater flexibility in navigating the application process. Projects will be reviewed and selected three times per year to align with the start of each semester.
  • Pre-Application Consultation Requirement: We've introduced this to facilitate thorough discussions on project concepts, outline program requirements and expectations, address any questions, and assess the suitability of proposed projects.
  • Formation of Project Selection Committee: A project selection committee, comprising both CURA staff and past Kris Nelson community partners, has been established. This panel collaborates in assessing projects using a co-created rubric to ensure equitable project selection.
  • Implementation of Surveys for Feedback: We're incorporating surveys for student researchers and community partners to foster more formalized and consistent evaluation methods, enhancing feedback consistency. (Past partners, look out for surveys in your inboxes soon!)
  • Clear Articulation of Community Partner Expectations: Clear expectations for community partners have been outlined, allowing them to more accurately assess their capacity prior to applying to the program. 

These initial adjustments have been inspired by dialogues with our community partners and dedicated student researchers. Additionally, they draw upon insights gleaned from best practices observed in other organizations and CURA programs, as well as the guiding principles of research justice. Our program is dedicated to constantly evolving to reflect the meaningful feedback of our partners, ensuring our work remains relevant and effective.

More details about community-based research: