Justifying Action Research

Published: 
Feb. 15, 2014

Source: Educational Action Research, Volume 22, Issue 1, 2014, pages 4-20

In this article, the author uses a general philosophy of science perspective in looking at the problem of justifying action research.


First he tries to clarify the concept of justification, by contrasting it with the concept of validity, which seems to be used almost as a synonym in some parts of the literature.
He discusses the need for taking a stand in relation to the questions of validity and justification also in action research.

The author uses examples of the battle between Galileo Galilei (1564–1642) and the Catholic Church in the seventeenth century and the battle between Aage Bødtker Sørensen, Rickard Hackman and Norges råd for anvendt samfunnsforskning on one side, and the action researchers at the Norwegian Work Research Institute on the other side in the mid-1990s as a point of departure.
He uses these examples to inquire into the problem of justifying action research by comparing some different traditions and their ways of justifying themselves.

Updated: Jun. 08, 2015
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