Building and Sustaining Community Partnerships: An Organizational Network Analysis in a Low-resource Neighborhood

Online Publication Date:
February 28, 2022
Publication Status:
Published Article MUSE Link:
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**Published in Progress in Community Health Partnerships (PCHP) volume 16.4. All rights reserved.** ABSTRACT Background: Launched in 2012, the Claremont Healthy Village Initiative (CHVI) is a partnership focused on fostering community collaboration, addressing the social determinants of health, and reducing health disparities. Partners include local community centers, schools, afterschool programs, health care providers, a health insurer, city agencies, tenant associations, resident leaders, elected officials, and other stakeholders. Objectives: To understand the development and value of collaboration within the CHVI from the perspective of multiple partners. Method: Utilizing the community-based participatory research (CBPR) apparoach, we worked collaboratively with the CHVI leaders, we utilized paper and web-based surveys grounded in social network theory were administered in 2017 and 2018. Questions focused on relationships between organizations that are part of the coalition. Our analysis included responses from organizations that participated in the survey at both points in time. Network measures such as density, degree centrality, and node characteristics were used to understand information sharing, referral, and collaboration among the participating organizations. Additional data included stakeholder interviews. Results: Coalition partners increased connectedness with one another over the course of the study, with significantly greater density of relationship and bi-directional partnerships in the follow-up survey. Of the three types of interactions, referrals showed a trend for highest density change. Trust levels were highest among organizations with a local physical presence. Conclusions: Social network analysis provided visual and quantitative information that helped reinforce relationships and identify opportunities to improve connectedness and collaboration among diverse community partners, helping to support the coalition’s goals and objectives.