Community-Based Participatory Approaches to Knowledge Translation: HIV Prevention Case Study of the Investigaytors Program


Approaches to knowledge translation (KT) that engage community stakeholders in the research cycle have been identified as particularly promising for addressing the “know-do” gap. Using the case study of a long-standing community-based participatory research (CBPR) project known as the “Investigaytors,” this article describes the development and implementation of a KT intervention aimed at facilitating access to HIV pre-exposure prophylaxis for gay, bisexual, and other sexual minority men in British Columbia, Canada, through a publicly funded program. In doing so, we offer a model of CBPR for KT that is highly participatory, driven by community members, and centered around capacity building. We also present findings from a focus group with eight volunteer co-researchers to capture the perspectives of community members involved in the CBPR process and to evaluate the strengths and challenges associated with the use of a CBPR framework for KT. Findings from the focus group reveal how the inclusion of multiple perspectives from community, academic, and healthcare partners contributes to the perceived strength and credibility of the KT intervention opportunities for improving the CBPR process and how the CBPR process itself can be a form of integrated KT. This work has implications for future KT that deploys a CBPR framework, including an expanded understanding of reciprocity that can include benefits such as training and professional development, as well as introducing a novel approach to KT that is driven by community and integrates multiple perspectives. We conclude with reflections on implementing CBPR practices for KT in different settings.

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The authors would like to thank all the co-researchers of the Investigaytors program, as well as participants in the qualitative research project, whose time and contributions have helped advance our understanding of PrEP and the health and well-being of sexual minority men in Canada. This work was made possible by an award from the Canadian Institutes for Health Research (CTW-155550), Canadian Institutes for Health Research Engage Intervention Fund (TE2-138299), and an Innovation Research Grant from CANFAR, the Canadian Foundation for AIDS Research (29-518). RK and NJL are supported by Scholar Awards from the Michael Smith Foundation for Health Research. JM is supported by a Vanier Canada Graduate Scholarship.

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Correspondence to Jeffrey Morgan.

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The focus group received ethics approval by the University of British Columbia–Providence Health Care Research Ethics Board (H19-02704).

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Informed consent was obtained from all individual participants included in the study.

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Morgan, J., Schwartz, C., Ferlatte, O. et al. Community-Based Participatory Approaches to Knowledge Translation: HIV Prevention Case Study of the Investigaytors Program. Arch Sex Behav 50, 105–117 (2021).

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  • Community-based participatory research
  • Knowledge translation
  • Pre-exposure prophylaxis
  • Men who have sex with men (MSM)
  • Sexual orientation