Transgressive Practices in Participatory Action Research within the Context of Projects as a System of Governance: Challenges of the Project Society

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    Abstract

    The article explores the notion of “project” in relation to participatory
    action research. When action research as a research practice first came to
    Scandinavia in the sixties, the very concept of project and doing projects was
    in itself transgressive. This is no longer the case. Today much working life and
    societal development is organized around projects where goals, practises and
    criterion for success are intended to run only for a limited period of time, and
    where project endlessly follows project with the risk of fragmented outlooks
    as well as outcomes. We will discuss how the widespread institutional and discursive
    presence of projects in people’s everyday lives affects the possibilities
    of action research to engage in meaningful democratic and transgressive practises
    with its participants. When does participatory action research become yet
    another social technique and when does it have the potential to challenge dominating
    social hierarchies and contribute to social change? We will discuss these
    questions based on findings from two empirical action research projects from
    our own work in the multicultural field. In one project, teachers and researcher
    engage in the development of multicultural education at a primary school. The
    214 other project considers the participation of a group of young ethnic minority
    girls in a multicultural suburban area and has as its aim the development of
    democratic learning processes and empowerment.
    Original languageEnglish
    Title of host publicationMultikulturel lærerfaglighed som refleksionspraksis
    Number of pages26
    Place of PublicationRoskilde Universitet
    Publication date4 Apr 2012
    Pages223-239
    ISBN (Print)8791387531
    ISBN (Electronic)9788791387531
    Publication statusPublished - 4 Apr 2012

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