What is PAR?

"The Logic and Practice of the Participatory Action Research Paradigm"

Yoland Wadsworth
Currently,Adjunct Professor at Action Research Centre, Melbourne, Victoria, Australia
and Centre for Applied Social Research, RMIT University, Melbourne, Victoria, Australia
and McCaughey VicHealth Centre, University of Melbourne

On June 20th 2001, Yoland Wadsworth introduced a discussion at Cornell University about participatory/action research and its methodology in its historical and comparative contexts. Her seminar is presented here for viewing. Dr. Wadsworth has 29 years of experience in social research and evaluation, consultancy and workshop facilitation. Most of her work has been in the human services' sector: in local government, community services, State government policy and research, community health, mental health, children's services and child and family welfare, where she has worked with human service professionals, managers, funders, policy-makers and community, self help and consumer groups. She has particularly found herself focusing on achieving the participation of multiple stakeholders - notably the most unheard voices such as those of service-users and professional staff advocating a service-user perspective. She helped to establish the Melbourne Action Research Issues Centre and is the author of two national best-selling research and evaluation texts `Do It Yourself Social Research' and `Everyday Evaluation On The Run' (2nd Eds. Allen & Unwin, Sydney: 1997). She has a PhD (1985) from Monash University (on the topic of pure and applied social research), has won the Australasian Evaluation Society's ET&S Award for outstanding contribution to Australian evaluation, and is currently working on a book about `building in' user-responsive practice research in human services.