Community Engagement in Durham and Around the World

a map showing Bass Connections involvement around the world

Most Bass Connections teams work with partners beyond Duke, including nonprofits, universities, school systems, hospitals, government agencies and private companies. Teams have worked with 170 external partners in 32 countries on five continents in addition to many cities and towns around the U.S., the Carolinas and here in Durham.

In the 2017-18 academic year:

  • 90% of team leaders who responded to the end-of-year survey reported that their team engaged externally in some way, including having an external client or community partner, collecting data from participants outside of Duke and consulting external organizations for guidance.
  • Each Data+, Story+ and Student Research Training team had a partner or client.
  • 29 project teams had one or more formal community partners or clients, totaling 94 external affiliates.

These partnerships are making an impact. For example, a Bass Connections project team conducted research on the health effects of illegal gold mining in the Peruvian Amazon, in collaboration with the Ministry of Health. In May 2016, Peru’s government declared a public health emergency to address the mercury pollution caused by mining along the Madre de Dios River. According to an article by Barbara Fraser in Nature, “Peru’s government used the Duke team’s latest study to determine which riverside communities should receive the emergency aid.”

Duke’s contribution is very important as it serves to set out the course of action for future work. —Dr. Jaime F. Flores, Executive Director, Alto Amazonas Health Network, Regional Government of Loreto, Peru

2018-19 Projects with North Carolina Partners

Developing Rapid, Cost-effective Methods for Evaluating Coastal Biodiversity and Resilience

  • Anne Deaton, NC Division of Marine Fisheries
  • Daniel Govoni, NC Division of Coastal Management
  • Brandon Pucket, North Carolina Coastal Reserves/National Estuarine Research Reserves
  • Lexia Weaver, NC Coastal Federation

Documenting Durham’s Health History: Understanding the Roots of Health Disparities

  • Elizabeth Baltes, Coastal Carolina University

Gerrymandering and the Extent of Democracy in America

  • Andrew Chin, UNC School of Law
  • North Carolinians for Redistricting Reform

Making Young Voters: Policy Reforms to Increase Youth Turnout

  • Wake County Public School System

Mindfulness in Human Development

  • Phillips Middle School, Chapel Hill
  • Y.O.G.A. for Youth NC

Music for Social Change: Research in Practice with Kidznotes and El Sistema USA 

  • Nick Malinowski, Kidznotes
  • Josh deVries, El Sistema USA

Oculomotor Response as an Objective Assessment for Mild TBI in the Pediatric Population

  • Cardinal Gibbons High School, Raleigh
  • Durham Eagles Pop Warner Youth Football
  • Raleigh Revolution Middle School Youth Football

Open Source Pedagogy, Research + Innovation (OSPRI) Lab

  • Red Hat

Sowers and Reapers: Gardening in an Era of Change

  • Pauli Murray Center for Social Justice
  • Elizabeth Shulman, Durham County Library
  • Tim Stallmann, Counter Cartographies/SAVAS

Vaccine Misinformation and Its Link to Vaccine Hesitancy and Uptake in Durham

  • Sachiko Ozawa, UNC - Eshelman School of Pharmacy

Wired for Learning: Supporting Thinking Skills in the K-2 Classroom

  • Beth Cross, Durham Public Schools
  • Laura Parrott, Durham Public Schools