University-Community Partnerships- Why Bother?

  • Ira Harkavay
  • Wim Wiewel
Keywords: Higher Education, Community, Partnerships


University partnerships with local communities have become increasingly important, responding to societal needs as well as critiques of universities. This Overview introduces the articles in this issue that document approaches universities are taking, obstacles that are encountered, and ways in which programs can be evaluated and institutionalized. It also describes key areas requiring attention: the implementation of partnerships; the proper role for the university in applied work; the adaptation of university structures and processes; weighing who should benefit from community involvement by universities; and the staying power of this new direction in university work.