Tag Archives: featured

Why reciprocity is not as simple as it seems?

Reciprocity, just like many other terms such as equality, justice, participation, have become a rhetoric where we are often stuck with the talk rather than the walk. Because, in each of these terms, it involves at least two completely difference universe.

Let’s talk about it in the context of community-academic partnerships, and I would use a very specific case when people have differing opinions  leading to arguments. A phrase I was told says that “an argument is a moment of a productive conversation.” In this case, at least I would try to explain that the idea of reciprocity means almost nothing. This is because academics and community members are in two very different social constructions when committing to argumentative conversations.

Continue reading Why reciprocity is not as simple as it seems?

A new UNESCO report on community-university partnerships


A new report on community-university research partnerships has been published by the United Nations Education, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO).  I have the privilege to work with my colleague UW-Madison Morgridge Center’s Beth Tryon and Loyola CURL’s Phyl Nyden on a chapter that features a critical analysis of practices in the United States.

The Strengthening Community University Research Partnerships: GLOBAL PERSPECTIVES report outlines a number of important practices in how research partnerships are conducted from the beginning to the end.  On their website, the UNESCO introduce the report as “a global study of institutional arrangements for the facilitation and support of research partnerships between Civil Society Organizations (CSO) and Higher Education Institutions (HEI).”

This book is available for download.


Infographic on South Madison Food Justice Project

Abby Jackson is a friend who joined our team for the South Madison food justice project.  She would be a Teaching Assistant for the service learning capstone course for the 2014-2015 academic year.  She was one of our students in our previous community-university partnership with The Natural Step Monona, where I got to know her excellent community-oriented skills that essential for our project.

Among one of a few things that she did in starting off her journey with us was to put together this infographic about the project.  The poster was presented at the Wisconsin Prevention of Diabetes & Center for Integrated Agriculture Studies, and won a prize in the category of Community Access to Healthy Food.

Please view the poster in pdf that illustrates our plan for the project.


Robert Pierce and South Madison friends honored by UW-Madison Chancellor


by: Alex Schwartz and Dadit Hidayat

On Tuesday June 3rd 2014 there was a big celebration for friends of South Madison at the Olin House, the UW-Madison Chancellor’s residence. Robert Pierce was honored with the 2014 LaMarr Billups Community-University Engagement Award by the UW-Madison Chancellor, Becky Blank. His exceptional collaboration with the university for over 15 years is unparalleled.

The LaMarr Billups award is a prestigious one for individuals who have demonstrated outstanding contributions to campus-community partnerships. LaMarr Billups was a much respected community leader at UW-Madison, and was deeply committed to key civic institutions and social causes. He served as a special assistant to two UW-Madison chancellors and was the director of community relations from 1996 to 2007. Continue reading Robert Pierce and South Madison friends honored by UW-Madison Chancellor