One of the great challenges for effective relationships operating between universities and communities is in identifying where the common interest for a partnership may lie. It is possible to explore that question in the abstract, and list how particular universities and excluded communities may be able to work together. But we have a concern with that approach, that it is deeply impersonal. If you are talking about relationships, then relationships are fundamentally among people. Those people may wish to accomplish strategic goals of institutions with which they are involved, and the wider strategic environment does shape the ways those relationships evolve. But we find a real risk in overly academic approaches to understanding community engagement which fails to adequately reflect the people behind the engagement. This chapter seeks to understand the delicate ecology of relationships looking at a five-year community–university partnership focused on improving outcomes for disadvantaged children and their families.
|Title of host publication||University engagement with socially excluded communities|
|Place of Publication||London|
|Number of pages||20|
|Publication status||Published - 1 Jan 2013|