Designing an inquiry-based learning system: innovating in research praxis to transform science-policy-practice relations for sustainable development

Ison, R. L.; Collins, K. B. and Iaquinto, B. L. (2021). Designing an inquiry-based learning system: innovating in research praxis to transform science-policy-practice relations for sustainable development. Systems Research and Behavioral Science (Early Access).

DOI: https://doi.org/10.1002/sres.2811

Abstract

When designers of activities concerned with the dissemination of research findings pursue their practice all too often the linear model is implicitly or explicitly the default position. This paper uses the lens of praxis (theory-informed practical action) to offer a shift in possibility away from reliance on the linear model of innovation to a second-order modality of research practice more suited to sustainable development goal (SDG) implementation. Whilst second-order modalities of knowledge production, necessary to enact sustainability transitions and transformative praxis, are emerging many lack purposefully designed modes of praxis and are limited in their considerations regarding enactment and performativity. We report on the testing and evaluation of a purpose-driven design of a ‘learning system’ within the Australian urban-water sector to enact a ‘systemic inquiry’ capable of generating social learning. Changes in understanding and/or practices by those who participated were achieved, thus satisfying key criteria for initiating but not necessarily sustaining social learning. The praxis innovation described is suited to situations best framed as uncertain, complex and contested. The positive outcomes of the enacted ‘learning system’ support the case for more investment in action-oriented research to support innovation in the field of second-order systems praxis.

Viewing alternatives

Metrics

Public Attention

Altmetrics from Altmetric

Number of Citations

Citations from Dimensions

Item Actions

Export

About

Recommendations