Staff, students and community partners at the University of Durham and the University of Newcastle have been exploring a new technique called co-inquiry as an approach to community research.

Though there is no one way to do co-inquiry research, there are some core values. Co-inquiry research involves working with people, blurring the lines between researchers and subjects. This attempts to achieve equality between all participants in terms of focus, design, methods and results. All participants are considered as co-researchers.

Co-inquiry research should involve cooperation, participation, equality, co-production and social justice.

The toolkit describes some generic and specific skills useful for co-inquiry research. For example, generic skills include an ability to adapt, manage and meet expectations and the ability to assess group dynamics. Specific skills include ability to maintain a professional yet friendly persona, ability to deal with chaotic situations and encourage involvement etc.

It also outlines methods for creating a co-inquiry partnership, doing the actual research, sustaining the partnership and disseminating the research. It also details the advantages and disadvantages of the co-inquiry research method.

Download the guide here

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