Broadly defined, community-based research (CBR) is a process of conducting research that embraces and integrates the participation and local knowledge of people in communities and organizations with the goal of informing efforts to achieve social change. Although several publications on CBR exist, they primarily focus on processes, methods, and tools for developing and implementing CBR projects. This special issue of the Journal of Rural Social Sciences builds from that knowledge base, analyzes the outcomes of real-world CBR projects, and assesses learning outcomes for students, faculty, organizations, and community residents. This introduction to the special issue provides an overview of the academic and practical applications of community-based research that aim to achieve learning outcomes and social change for both university- and community-based partners. It includes a review of theoretical concepts and methodological approaches comprising CBR, followed by a summary of the articles in this issue.

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