Collaborative Research Partnerships – Dr Dan Tautolo presents at the International Association of Gerontology and Geriatrics (IAGG) Congress

Dr Dan Tautolo, the Principal Investigator of Ageing Well funded Pacific Islands Families research, presented at the International Association of Gerontology and Geriatrics (IAGG) Asia Oceania Congress in Taipei, Taiwan. Dr Tautolo spoke about the Pacific Grandparents Study in a talk titled, “Navigating between Islands – fostering connections and engaging older Pacific adults in a collaborative research partnership”.

The presentation summarised the project, focusing on the participatory action research approach. “Our primary focus of utilising culturally appropriate strategies and processes was to engage and develop a co-researcher relationship with our Pacific older people, to ensure that our project identified and addressed the issues which were directly relevant for them”, explains Dr Tautolo.

The presentation generated much interest amongst the audience, particularly around the study design and the need to tailor research to be culturally sensitive in order to improve the likelihood of successful uptake and impact.

Dr Tautolo is hopeful that, “potential international collaborations in ageing research may result from discussions at the conference.”

In addition to being a funding source, Dr Tautolo acknowledged Ageing Well National Science Challenge as a, “mechanism providing the research platform for this kind of research on ageing within Pacific families and communities.”

Dr Louise Parr-Brownlie, Co-Director Māori, Ageing Well National Science Challenge agrees, explaining that “National Science Challenges were developed to ‘do science differently.’ Dr Tautolo’s team co-designed questions and conducted research with Pacific families and their communities in culturally appropriate ways to enhance health outcomes.”

This study has allowed for participant-proposed solutions and action plans to be developed and implemented, to enhance the well-being of older Pacific people. “While the New Zealand Pacific population is quite youthful, there is a growing proportion of older Pacific people, and thus research of this kind will become more and more relevant and important,” he adds. Dr Tautolo, his team and their community of participants are actively demonstrating the benefits of collaborative research partnerships, especially among a population that is often isolated and unheard.

“Ageing Well National Science Challenge funds the best teams to deliver equitable outcomes for New Zealand’s diverse older communities,” Dr Parr-Brownlie added.

Learn more about Dr Tautolo’s Pacific Islands Families research here.