Is there madness in the method? Representations of Research in Lifelong Learning

Edwards, Richard; Clarke, Julia; Harrison, Roger and Reeve, Fiona (2002). Is there madness in the method? Representations of Research in Lifelong Learning. Adult Education Quarterly, 52(2) pp. 128–139.

DOI: https://doi.org/10.1177/0741713602052002004

URL: http://aeq.sagepub.com/cgi/content/abstract/52/2/1...

Abstract

In the move from viewing research as purely technical, objective, and rational to understanding it as a social practice embedded in particular cultural, political, and historical contexts, we raise the question of how reality is represented in research practices and products. Thus, the purpose of this article is to examine the "performativity "of text in constructing and reporting research. To do that, this article explores the process of formulating research questions for an empirical study of conceptions of flexibility and lifelong learning in the context of further education in the United Kingdom. We examine the implications of an analytical reflexivity for the representation of research projects. This analysis of representation is (re)presented in three parallel versions of our research: a algorithmic tale, a tale of improvisations, and a reflexive tale.

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