NotesFAQContact Us
Search Tips
Peer reviewed Peer reviewed
Direct linkDirect link
ERIC Number: EJ819757
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2006-Feb
Pages: 20
Abstractor: As Provided
Reference Count: 31
ISSN: ISSN-1354-0602
Constructing Intercultural Knowledge and Understanding through Collaborative Action Research
Somekh, Bridget
Teachers and Teaching: Theory and Practice, v12 n1 p87-106 Feb 2006
Action researchers frequently find themselves caught in a tension between the need to generate actionable, useful knowledge as an outcome of publicly funded research and the necessity to recognize that knowledge can only be actionable, and useful in that sense, if it is locally and culturally specific. This paper directly addresses this tension and rejects the notion that the production of knowledge is an inappropriate goal for action research. It investigates the nature of the knowledge generated by action research through a reflexive analysis of the work of a research network spanning six countries: The Management for Organizational and Human Development Project (MOHD), 1994-1996. Through an exploration of how individuals can construct their identities and have an impact on organizational change in five different national contexts, the process of intercultural knowledge construction is illustrated. The cumulative evidence from seven separate research projects, involving university-based (or ministry-based) groups and teachers/managers, is presented and discussed. Analysis of this process supports the conclusion that claims for actionable, and therefore potentially transformative, public knowledge need to be derived from the unique case study knowledge generated from a large number of in-depth studies and that action research is a particularly effective research methodology for generating knowledge of this kind. The MOHD project made a contribution to knowledge and understanding of the social processes involved in managing human and organizational development. The process of collaborative knowledge construction was reciprocal and reiterative, moving between the personal and the public, encompassing political issues of power and control both within the participant organizations and the research team itself. (Contains 8 notes.)
Routledge. Available from: Taylor & Francis, Ltd. 325 Chestnut Street Suite 800, Philadelphia, PA 19106. Tel: 800-354-1420; Fax: 215-625-2940; Web site:
Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Evaluative
Education Level: N/A
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A