Development of Scales Measuring the Capacity of Community-Based Initiatives

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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.

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