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Promoting Indigenous Research on Suicide Prevention and Related Topics: A Workshop to Define Issues, Develop Strategies and Identify Sustaining Frameworks


Location: Albuquerque, New Mexico

Sponsored by:
National Institute of Mental Health
Center for Native American Health, University of New Mexico Health Sciences Center

As a follow-up to the February 2006 meeting "Indigenous Suicide Prevention Research and Programs in Canada and the United States: Setting a Collaborative Agenda", NIMH supported a workshop to further identify challenges faced by indigenous researchers. Dr. Tassy Parker, Center for Native American Health and the Department of Family and Community Medicine at the University of New Mexico Health Sciences Center, co-organized the workshop. The meeting agenda was based on a core values paradigm1 that was adapted to address four levels in which indigenous investigators face complex, culture-related personal and professional challenges2 . These levels are: Individual—what it means to be an indigenous researcher; Community—the intersection between researchers' and the communities' values; Academy—the intersection between values of indigenous researchers and academic settings; and Sponsor—the intersection between succeeding in the NIH grants process while maintaining the values of indigenous researchers and the community. Workshop participants developed strategies to address challenges in each area, such as fostering indigenous researchers' participation and leadership in research studies, and nurturing trust and mutual respect between researchers and the community. For more information, please contact Beth Bowers at

1. Pecos, R. (October 3, 2006). Presentation to the University of New Mexico Center for Native American Health, Albuquerque, New Mexico.

2. Parker, T. (December 2006). Promoting American Indian and Alaska Native New Investigator Research: A Report to the National Institute of Mental Health. NIH contract no. MI-60775.

Diagram showing the two-way relationships between core values and the indigenous researcher, the indigenous community, the academic institution, and the sponsor

Diagram courtesy of Mr. Regis Pecos