Participatory action research with and within community activist groups: capturing the collective experience of ireland’s community and voluntary pillar in social partnership
Carney, Gemma M
Léime, Áine Ní
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Carney, Gemma M; Dundon, Tony; Léime, Áine Ní (2012). Participatory action research with and within community activist groups: capturing the collective experience of ireland’s community and voluntary pillar in social partnership. Action Research 10 (3), 313-330
The inclusion of community activists in policy planning is increasingly recognized at the highest international level. This article shows how the use of Participatory Action Research (PAR) can present a deeper and more holistic picture of the experiences of Civil Society Organizations (CSOs) in shaping national-level social policy. By utilizing action-based research, the Community and Voluntary Pillar (CVP) of Ireland's system of social partnership is shown to be an important agent in deliberating national bargaining outcomes (known as the Towards 2016 national agreement). The key contribution of this research is the reflective methodological considerations in terms of PAR design, execution and participant integration in the research process as a way to enrich and develop a deeper and more informed community of practice.