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The ‘resilience’ of community organisations during the COVID-19 pandemic: absorptive, adaptive and transformational capacity during a crisis response

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This Research Note applies the concept of ‘resilience’ to explore how Neighbourhood Networks in Leeds in the UK ‐ 37 local community organisations supporting older people ‐ responded to the COVID-19 pandemic. It highlights how understanding resilience as a capacity that can be absorptive, adaptive or transformative helps describe the response of community organisations during the pandemic, highlighting a process of ongoing adjustment and innovation as the pandemic evolved. We suggest that the concept of resilience is helpful in this context for understanding how community organisations responded to the emergent nature of the crisis, but it is less effective at revealing why that may have been the case. This limitation notwithstanding, we argue that absorptive, adaptive and transformative capacity ought to be desirable attributes of community organisations if they are distributed equitably and enable them to fulfil their mission and contribute to social change.
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Keywords: COVID-19; community organisations; neighbourhoods; resilience

Document Type: Research Article

Affiliations: 1: Sheffield Hallam University, UK 2: University of Birmingham, UK 3: We Research It, UK

Publication date: July 2021

This article was made available online on May 25, 2021 as a Fast Track article with title: "The ‘resilience’ of community organisations during the COVID-19 pandemic: absorptive, adaptive and transformational capacity during a crisis response".

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