Defining Elements of Success: A Critical Pathway of Coalition Development

Laura M. Downey, Carol L. Ireson, Svetla Slavova, Genia McKee

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

22 Scopus citations


In recent decades, coalitions have been established to address many public health problems, including injury prevention. A partnership among the Kentucky Injury Prevention and Research Center and four injury prevention coalitions has documented the developmental stages of successful coalitions. This developmental process was constructed through the analysis of participating coalition documents, such as each coalition's mission statement, bylaws or rules of operation, the use of committees within the organization, frequency of meetings, and additional historical documents. Themes from this analysis guided researchers in designing a critical pathway model that describes milestones in coalition formation. Critical components in coalition formation include a clear definition of the coalition structure, coalition enhancement, funding, community support, leadership, education and outreach to the community, membership, partnerships, data and evaluation, and publicity. These findings are applicable to public health professionals who work with community-based coalitions and citizens who participate in local coalitions.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)130-139
Number of pages10
JournalHealth Promotion Practice
Issue number2
StatePublished - Apr 2008


  • academic—community partnership
  • coalition development
  • injury prevention

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health
  • Nursing (miscellaneous)


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