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Action Research as an Enhancement of Natural Problem Solving

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  • Bob Dick

Abstract

I think of action research as an extension of a natural approach to problem solving. Faced with a novel situation we often first investigate. We then develop an intention to act, and carry it out. We notice if it worked. Action research similarly cycles between intention, action and review. To this natural process it adds certain important enhancements. The review component is strengthened. Rigour and theory are given more attention. More care is given to identify who else should be involved, and how. Flexibility is strengthened. A variety of processes are used, many borrowed from other literatures and practices. This paper begins with a broad overview of action research from this perspective. Different aspects of my own variations on this approach are then examined and described in more detail. As I examine my use of action research, I illustrate my comments with examples. Most of these are taken from a university class I facilitated for many years.

Suggested Citation

  • Bob Dick, 2007. "Action Research as an Enhancement of Natural Problem Solving," International Journal of Action Research, Rainer Hampp Verlag, vol. 3(1+2), pages 149-167.
  • Handle: RePEc:rai:ijares:doi_10.1688/1861-9916_ijar_2007_01_dick
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    Keywords

    Action research; flexibility; rigour; theory building; data-driven research; participation; meta-methodology;

    JEL classification:

    • A14 - General Economics and Teaching - - General Economics - - - Sociology of Economics
    • J28 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Demand and Supply of Labor - - - Safety; Job Satisfaction; Related Public Policy

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