Development of scales measuring the capacity of community-based initiatives

Michele Lempa, Robert M. Goodman, Janet Rice, Adam B. Becker

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

40 Scopus citations


This article describes the development of two measures for the capacity of local public health initiatives. Data obtained from a qualitative study of eight community-based initiatives served as the basis for the development of a survey instrument. It was administered to a national sample of both leaders and nonleaders of 291 such initiatives. Because survey results for leaders and nonleaders differed, results could not be combined into a single data set for analysis. Results for each data set were analyzed by employing exploratory principal components and factor analyses. A 44-item, six-factor scale resulted for leaders and a 38-item, five-factor scale resulted for nonleaders. The high degree of overlap (22 items) between the two scales resulted in a combined 60-item instrument that can be administered to both leaders and nonleaders but analyzed separately.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)298-315
Number of pages18
JournalHealth Education and Behavior
Issue number3
StatePublished - Jun 2008


  • Community capacity
  • Community health initiatives
  • Community health measures
  • Social protective factors

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Arts and Humanities (miscellaneous)
  • Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health


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