• ©Paul Hamlyn Foundation & John Carey www.musicindetention.org.uk
    ©Paul Hamlyn Foundation & John Carey www.musicindetention.org.uk
  • ©Deirdre Conlon
    ©Deirdre Conlon
  • ©Deirdre Conlon
    ©Deirdre Conlon
  • ©Deirdre Conlon
    ©Deirdre Conlon


This page provides resources to guide and assist you through a successful ‘match’ and to completion of a successful research project. Content on this page is compiled and adapted from a range of online resources and links to sites and references are provided. Consult the online resources to learn more about making and maintaining successful and productive ‘matches’.

What is participatory research? An overview …

Participatory research is well established in the social sciences. It is based on the principle that all research participants, whether from a university or another community, are co-researchers and therefore strives toward involving all co-research partners throughout the stages of a project including: initial focus, design, methods, results, and dissemination.[1] A participatory approach can take a range of different forms, depending on co-researchers’ aims and interests. For example, it ranges from consultation and/or routine ‘check-ins’, to collaboration at some or all stages and/or full participation. Rachel Pain and colleagues have described participatory research as a two way process that results in ‘more embedded, responsive and socially relevant research’ (2011, p. 186).[2] No matter what form it takes, a participatory approach emphasizes active partnerships.

From connection to collaboration: some things to keep in mind…

Getting collaboration right requires a careful approach. In these two documents we provide guidelines on developing a successful collaboration and an example memorandum of understanding that you might want to use with your collaborator.

From connection to collaboration

Example memorandum of understanding

Ethical issues about which to be mindful…

There are a lot of issues related to doing research, and this is not the place to list all of these (instead a good starting point is this research ethics guidebook: http://www.ethicsguidebook.ac.uk/). But there are seperate ethical issues that can arise when entering into and building collaborations. Please read through the following document that povides reflection on some of these.

Some ethical issues involved in building a collaboration

Example confidentiality agreement


Here you’ll find links to sites and groups that provide information about participatory research as well as valuable resources to assist in ensuring a successful collaboration. We will add more resources as the ‘match-maker’ project continues.

[1] See Beacon North East (2011) Co-Inquiry Toolkit: Community-university participatory research partnerships: co-inquiry and related approaches. Newcastle: Beacon North East. https://www.dur.ac.uk/resources/beacon/CoinquiryTookitFINAL.pdf
[2] See Rachel Pain, Mike Kesby and Kye Askins (2011) Geographies of impact: power, participation, and potential. Area 43.2, 1830188.