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Publication Date



UM campus only

Embargo Period


Degree Type


Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy (PHD)


Sociology (Arts and Sciences)

Date of Defense


First Committee Member

John W. Murphy

Second Committee Member

George Wilson

Third Committee Member

Crystal Adams

Fourth Committee Member

Scotney Evans


Community-based Participatory Research (CBPR) is important for addressing various social problems and increasing life-chance opportunities in marginalized neighborhoods. The problem is that the philosophy at the root of a true community-based project is often overlooked, that is, the anti-dualism that is assumed by participation. What occurs is that key facets of a community-based endeavor, such as community entrée, community control, and participation, are understood merely in technical terms. As a result, without the proper theoretical orientation, a community may be undermined during a project. This dissertation is a theoretical investigation with a component dedicated to reflection on a CBPR project conducted by the author in cooperation with a non-profit organization in the Dominican Republic. The project explored the prospects for enhancing volunteer participation and collaboration in an annual summer academic camp. Examples from this initiative are incorporated to provide illustrative support. The central issues examined are community membership, the co-construction of local knowledge, and acting in concert with a community. The purpose is to present three principles for CBPR that are based on community-based philosophy and the need for intersubjective dialogue. The main contribution is that a theoretically-informed understanding of CBPR is advanced.


community-based; community-based participatory research; Dominican Republic