Community- based systems dynamics for Reproductive Health: An Example from Urban Ohio, USA

Online Publication Date:
February 21, 2022
Publication Status:
Published Article MUSE Link:
Manuscript PDF File:

**Published in Progress in Community Health Partnerships (PCHP) volume 16.3. All rights reserved.**

Background: Health outcomes, risk factors, and policies are complexly related to the reproductive health system. Systems-level frameworks for understanding and acting within communities through community-engaged research are needed to mitigate adverse reproductive health outcomes more effectively within the community.
Objectives: To describe and share lessons learned from an ongoing application of a participatory modeling approach (community-based system dynamics) that aims to eliminate racial inequities in Black-White reproductive health outcomes.
Methods: The community-based system dynamics approach involves conducting complementary activities, workshops, modeling, and dissemination. We organized workshops, co-developed a causal loop diagram of the reproductive health system with participants from the community, and created materials to disseminate workshop findings and preliminary models.
Lessons Learned: Many opportunities exist for cross-fertilization of best practices between community-based system dynamics and community-based participatory research. Shared learning environments offer benefits for modelers and domain experts alike. Additionally, identifying local champions from the community helps manage group dynamics.
Conclusions: Community-based system dynamics is well-suited for understanding complexity in the reproductive health system. It allows participants from diverse perspectives to identify strategies to eliminate racial inequities in reproductive health outcomes.