Action research has been recognised for its breadth as a field of research practice and its depth as a discourse of theoretical insight. It does not have one neat, widely accepted…
Action research has been recognised for its breadth as a field of research practice and its depth as a discourse of theoretical insight. It does not have one neat, widely accepted definition. Points to some reasons for the difficulty of formulating a generally accepted definition of action research, and argues why action research should not be confined but should be both clarified for communication and open for development. The discussion stems from a working definition developed with participants in an international symposium that serves as a classic definition of action research. Presents several alternative approaches to resolution and argues for a judicious mix of pragmatism and flexibility in approaching the definition issue.
The paper aims to offer the notion of “taking an attitude of inquiry” as a quality process in research, enabling researchers to be aware of and articulate the complex processes of…
The paper aims to offer the notion of “taking an attitude of inquiry” as a quality process in research, enabling researchers to be aware of and articulate the complex processes of interpretation, reflection and action they engage in. The purpose is to consider this as a quality process that complements more procedural approaches.
Drawing on 25 years experience in an action research community – in which the authors have developed theory and practice in the company of colleagues – to articulate and illustrate what “taking an attitude of inquiry” can mean. The paper seeks to make quality practices thus developed available to a wider community of researchers.
Two schema with illustrations are offered. Qualities that enable taking an attitude of inquiry are suggested: curiosity, willingness to articulate and explore purposes, humility, participation and radical empiricism. Disciplines of inquiring practice are identified as: paying attention to framing and its pliability; enabling participation to generate high quality knowing, appreciating issues of power; working with multiple ways of knowing; and engaging in, and explicating, research as an emergent process.
Research is depicted as both disciplined and alive. Researchers are invited to engage fully in self‐reflective practice to enhance quality and validity.
An articulation of a depth view of quality in self‐reflective research practice which has been developed in an action research context and can be applied to research more generally.
This paper is an edited version of an interview that presents information and insight into the background of ALARPM (action learning, action research and process management) not…
This paper is an edited version of an interview that presents information and insight into the background of ALARPM (action learning, action research and process management) not only as a field but also as a worldwide network association, thus facilitating understanding of the evolution and nature of these three concepts. The interviewee’s responses reflect her personal perspective, informed by both life experience and a theoretical framework that conceives of ALARPM first as a philosophy, a theory of learning and a methodology, and second as a method and technique.
In these uncertain and risky times, the work that educators and educational researchers carry out may feel inconsequential. In preparing young people to live well in a world worth…
In these uncertain and risky times, the work that educators and educational researchers carry out may feel inconsequential. In preparing young people to live well in a world worth living in, educators must consider, firstly, what roles they can play in a global environment riven by volatile economic, social, and environmental contexts, and secondly, the responsibilities they bear as researchers to produce forms of understanding, modes of action, and ways of relating to one another and this world.
In this chapter, we introduce the pedagogy, education, and praxis (PEP) network and how it is that we, as researchers from around the world, came together to discuss our researching practices in coming to know and explore educational research problems concerning equity, diversity and social justice within and across different cultural settings. We share short stories of ourselves to reveal how it is that we have come to know, be, and act as researchers in our projects and how working alongside each other – our mutual relatings – have generated further understanding about our own and each other’s researching practices.
This chapter establishes the purpose of the book, where we share empirical work through the lens of practice architectures. For instance, what is considered to be an educational equity problem across international or cross-cultural sites? What are considered acceptable forms of evidence of coming to understand educational inequity in its diverse forms in different sites? How are taken-for-granted research practices enabling and/or constraining different forms of understandings about educational inequity, including the issues to be researched and/or the direction of the research project? We then provide an overview of the remaining chapters.
The aim of the study was to illustrate how three different institutional logics, present in the implementation of action research, interact in a formalised project, in a…
The aim of the study was to illustrate how three different institutional logics, present in the implementation of action research, interact in a formalised project, in a traditional university setting.
The article is empirical in nature and the research method used is an instrumental case study. The case was the implementation of action research within the framework of an educational project co-financed by EU funds, conducted in a Polish public university. The research process was conducted from September 2017 to November 2019. The following techniques were used: document analysis, in-depth interviews, participatory observation during the project. Constant comparative analysis was used as an analytical approach.
The study indicates that action research, project management and university management follow different “logics”. The dominant logic of action research is problem-solving, of project management is efficiency and of university management is compliance. These different logics and the relationship between them is explained in the paper.
The research enriches the ongoing discussion on logic multiplicity and project management in a new context – that of the university environment and combines the issue of the implementation of action research with broader conversations on institutional logics.
The purpose of this paper is to implement diversity and inclusion practices in an USA university department through the application of a cultural audit in the style of…
The purpose of this paper is to implement diversity and inclusion practices in an USA university department through the application of a cultural audit in the style of participatory action research (PAR). The cultural audit process demonstrates an inclusive, grassroots approach to creating actionable solutions that brings about positive organizational change and can be replicated by others.
The version of an organizational cultural audit described here included two phases. The first was quantitative in nature, using a survey to collect data that would provide the organization with a perspective of how its culture is perceived (Fletcher and Jones, 1992) and serve as the basis for the second, more crucial phase. The second phase utilized PAR qualitative approach. Having data presented in aggregate form allows for truer reactions to how others believe they experience the work environment, as opposed to making assumptions about how others may experience the work environment. A cultural audit such as this relies heavily upon the qualitative narrative that is exposed when participants react to the quantitative data presented. In fact, the real assessment begins not with the quantitative data collection process, but with the presentation of the quantitative data and the analysis of how participants respond to what they see.
The researchers found social and practical implications for empowering employees to develop a culturally agile organization. Results showed that participants generally viewed the culture as lacking transparency and needing values-based guidelines for everyday interactions. Participants thought they should value diversity, but viewed the culture as having a gap in solutions to apply that value. Incentivizing actions that promote diversity and inclusion and better shared governance were needed to address cultural problems in the organization. Recommendations for actionable solutions included: developing shared language through a values statement, restructuring onboarding and mentoring support, increasing transparency of standing committee work, membership, and minutes to foster trust and communication, implementing group guidelines for respectful interactions, and the creation of regular, planned social events to enhance human relations. This case study is significant because it uses an innovative method to not only study diversity and inclusion in a university setting, but also take action, thereby filling a gap in the literature on critical studies of organizations.
For those trying to institute a similar experience for their organization, it would be important to note that the cultural audit was a grassroots intervention, designed to help the division discern what kinds of lived experiences and shared assumptions exist within.
The case study presented should serve as a roadmap for how individuals can garner support for conducting a similar cultural audit with their own organizations.
This case study is significant because it uses an innovative method to not only study diversity in a university setting, but also take action, thereby filling a gap in the literature on critical studies of organizations.
We argue that our understanding of how institutions matter has been undermined by a piecemeal approach to temporality in institutional analyses. This paper addresses this…
We argue that our understanding of how institutions matter has been undermined by a piecemeal approach to temporality in institutional analyses. This paper addresses this shortcoming in the literature. We bring temporality to the fore by conceptualizing practices, which constitute institutions, as understood, situated, and coordinated in time by temporal structures. We elaborate an integrated framework of temporal structures that consist of three types: temporal patterns, temporal conceptions, and temporal orientations – and outline how each type contributes to the reproduction of practices. We discuss the implications of this framework for sustainability initiatives and conclude by suggesting future avenues of research on the temporal foundations of institutions.