This chapter turns to a second important area of contestation. This concerns the ongoing debate between theory and practice as it relates to the issue of urban violence. In seeking to bridge the divide between the different worlds of academic research and policy action, it outlines the potential contribution of recently developed participatory methodologies. Finally, by way of background, it provides a brief description of the research communities. Associated with this are the particular methodological constraints in implementing participatory appraisals in areas with such high levels of gratuitous daily violence that communities live in ‘cultures of fear’ or ‘silence.’