Strategies for capacity building in a low-resource setting: Stakeholders’ voices

James D. Lee, Hedda Meadan, Enkhjin Oyunbaatar, Amarbuyan Amar

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

Although global prevalence of autism has grown substantially, researchers still report inequity in access to evidence-based interventions in many low-resource settings where majority of world’s children live. Capacity building of diverse stakeholders in low-resource settings has been suggested to be a potential way to mitigate low levels of access to resources; however, little is known about what these stakeholders consider as helpful strategies in capacity building. In this qualitative research, we conducted five focus groups with 30 Mongolian caregivers of children with autism and 15 individual interviews with professionals in Mongolia. Three themes emerged from this study, including (a) partnership, (b) advocacy, and (c) empowerment. Each theme also contained several categories. For example, partnerships included enhancing collaboration among stakeholders and collaboration with international development agencies; advocacy included parental and legislative advocacy; and empowerment included training for diverse stakeholders, including caregivers and professionals. Implications and directions for future research are also suggested. Lay abstract: Prevalence of autism is increasing all around the globe, but there is still great inequity in accessing evidence-based interventions. Although the field of autism research has made great strides in identifying and establishing evidence-based interventions, dissemination and implementation of these interventions have been reported as inequitable. This inequity is especially highlighted in many low-resource settings, such as Mongolia. As a field, there is still much to be learned about what strategies are used by stakeholders in low-resource settings to build capacity and to mitigate the hardships. To gain a deeper understanding of strategies for capacity building within a low-resource setting, we conducted five focus groups with 30 Mongolian caregivers of children with autism and 15 individual interviews with various professionals who work in Mongolia. These stakeholders reported three main strategies, including (a) partnership, (b) advocacy, and (c) empowerment, which included several strategies and implications on capacity-building practices. Furthermore, the findings from this study may suggest important implications for future intervention research.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)162-173
Number of pages12
JournalAutism
Volume28
Issue number1
DOIs
StatePublished - Jan 2024

Keywords

  • capacity building
  • community academic partnership
  • strategies

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Developmental and Educational Psychology

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