An article published in Sociological Forum and co-authored by Rebecca A. London (UCSC) and Jennette Claassen (Playworks)
The field of community-engaged research emphasizes the importance of creating long-lasting, mutually beneficial, and reciprocal collaborations. However, many issues prevent collaborations from reaching this goal, including institutional structures at universities, power dynamics between research and community partners, and the project-based nature of research funding. In this article, the authors reflect on the 15-year research collaboration they have sustained with particular attention to the “how” of building trust, maintaining communications, and learning together. They conclude that their mutual commitment to supporting children and youth through play, and their attention to positionality and shared learning, have created the platform for a lasting partnership.