The Harm Reduction Research Collaboratory
The Harm Reduction Research Collaboratory convenes researchers, health care providers, harm reduction groups, and other diverse partners to improve safety and reduce stigma around drug use. We develop, implement, and evaluate local and system-level interventions while respecting the dignity and autonomy of people who use drugs.
The Harm Reduction Research Collaboratory is led, managed, and administered through the Duke School of Medicine’s Department of Population Health Sciences. We are a team of faculty and staff researchers who work on a diverse portfolio of research and evaluation projects across Duke and with partner organizations.
The Leadership Team is responsible for convening and managing the Collaboratory and implementing related projects. In addition to topical expertise, we have strong skills in:
- Research design
- Program evaluation
- Qualitative data collection and analysis
- Technical writing
- Dissemination to diverse audiences
- Grant development.
In response to the overdose epidemic, all efforts have been made to collaborate with community leaders to identify priorities, develop projects and translate evidence into practice while disseminating to diverse audiences. The principles of harm reduction are central to and woven throughout the portfolio.
The Collaboratory was originally founded with support from The Duke Endowment.
Harm Reduction Approach
Harm reduction is a set of practical strategies and ideas guiding our portfolio aimed at reducing negative consequences associated with drug use. Harm Reduction is also a movement for social justice built on a belief in, and respect for, the rights of people who use drugs. It incorporates a spectrum of strategies from safer use, to managed use, to abstinence, to meeting people who use drugs where they are.
There is no universal definition of or formula for implementing harm reduction, as interventions and policies should reflect specific individual and community needs.