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Table 3 Selected interview quotes on power dynamics and corresponding tools to address power differentials

From: Addressing power dynamics in community-engaged research partnerships

Selected quotes on power

Suggested tools

“We asked some really deep questions, and so we got to know each other. We built friendships… We all had different backgrounds, and we all represented different parts of the community. So usually these people that came together we would not—our lives would not have intersected anywhere other than here... So, I think that’s a part of the sustainability is having people that understand each other at a like real inside part of your soul kinda level.”

-Patient, stakeholder, or community member from western US

Implicit Bias Training is an effort to identify unconscious judgments based on ingrained stereotypes.

“What has helped us in regard to continuing [a] relationship is some critical awareness of the forces that are making things hard for people. Concepts of shared social justice… there is a broader picture when you’re interacting with populations who have been on the social exclusion historical experience, you need to include, and respect, and instill that it’s a systemic challenge that we face together, and that we want to change and not just some sort of Band-Aid.”

-Academic/researcher from southern US

Structural Competency is recognition and understanding of systemic, institutional, and policy related barriers that cause social and health inequities.

“The reason that we chose the researchers to work with that we did… we actually interviewed a whole bunch… One of them came in and I had a conversation with her, and I said how do you feel about partnering, and she said, ‘No.’ [Laughs] I said, ‘No?! Well, why? What is that?’ And she said, ‘Because I know nothing about American Indians. Nothing, and I really feel like you’ve got to know something about this population. I just—I have nothing to offer.’ And I said, ‘We’ll take you. Because we know nothing about research, and we’re coming in at the same place in some ways, and we’ll listen to every word you say, and you’ll listen to every word we say. You’re not coming in with preconceived notions, and we’ll have this co-learning going on all the time.”

-Patient, stakeholder, or community member from western US

Positionality is awareness of and an ongoing, internal dialogue by the researcher that examines their role in the production of knowledge and research based on a position of social status conferred on them by heritage, training, institution, gender and/or race.