Communities of Practice (CoP) Approach

Networking, learning, and collective action characterize the community of practice (CoP) model of the CRFS. Regional CoPs make possible collaboration, knowledge co-creation, and the exchange of innovation and information, in the process strengthening capacity at regional, institutional, project, and individual levels. Learning occurs within, between, and beyond the three geographic CoPs.

CRFS grantees report that the CoP approach is one of the most unique and valuable parts of the program, contributing to improved research quality as well as lasting relationships and partnerships among stakeholders. But it does require a time and resource commitment. Expectations and benefits for grantee participation in the CoP include the following:

  • Attend (with travel funds and expenses covered in grant project budgets) the regional CoP’s annual grantee convening. This typically involves scientific presentations, interactive or modeling exercises, peer exchange and feedback, collective reflection/idea generation, and/or immersive field visits.
  • Support of and partnership with the CRFS’s regional team of consultants in the development and execution of grant projects. This includes inception meetings, mid-year review meetings, peer review and publication support, and ongoing communication and technical assistance.
  • Support to develop and strengthen evaluative thinking and practice, including skills and methodologies around developmental evaluation and adaptive action, with assistance from the CRFS’s integrated monitoring, evaluation, and planning (IMEP) consultant team.
  • Help to strengthen research planning, design, execution, and analysis. This includes workshops, webinars, meetings, and hands-on guidance from the CRFS’s research methods support (RMS) team.
  • Additional opportunities throughout each year, such as conference sponsorship, cross-project meetings and exchanges, thematic group work, and access to a host of technical experts as well as resources and tools the likes of frameworks, handbooks, guides, videos, sensors, databases, and GIS technology.


Explore the three CoPs