About Building Trust Project
The Building Trust Between Minorities and Researchers project is a Bioethics Research Infrastructure Initiative funded by the National Institutes of Health (NIH) as part of the federal recognition of the importance of fostering greater participation rates of racial and ethnic minority populations in research.
Although health and medical research has been instrumental in improving the health of Americans, the underrepresentation of minorities in research has limited their ability to benefit equally from scientific advances. One of the main goals set forth by the Building Trust project was to create training and educational programs designed to increase the participation of minorities in public health and biomedical research and to strengthen the capacity of researchers and community members to work effectively with each other. We have developed two curricula to help achieve this goal, one for community members, and one for investigators, research staff, and IRB members.
Leading this project are Principal Investigators Stephen B. Thomas, PhD, and Sandra C. Quinn, PhD. Dr. Thomas is a Professor of Health Services Administration in the School of Public Health and Director of the Maryland Center of Health Equity. Dr. Quinn is the Associate Dean for Public Health Initiatives, a Professor in the Department of Family Science, and Senior Associate Director of the Maryland Center for Health Equity. Both are recognized as two of the nation’s leading scholars in the effort to eliminate racial and ethnic health disparities.
Goals of the Building Trust Initiative:
- Increase the participation of African Americans, Hispanics and other minority populations in public health and biomedical research, including clinical trials.
- Strengthen the capacity of investigators, institutional review board members and other research personnel to work effectively with minority communities.
- Create a sustainable infrastructure of training and educational initiatives that can be evaluated over time to determine their impact on improving minority participation in research.