This book defines the current identity of community studies, provides a critical but reliable introduction to its key concepts, and is an engaging guide to the key social research methods used by community researchers and practitioners.

Concise but clear, it caters for the needs of those interested in community studies by offering cross-referenced, accessible overviews of the key theoretical issues that have the most influence on community studies today.

It incorporates all of the important frames of reference including those which are:

Theoretical; Research focused; Practice and policy oriented; Political; Concerned about the place of community in everyday life

The extensive bibliographies and up-to-date guides to further reading reinforce the aim of the book to provide an invaluable learning resource.

Interdisciplinary in approach and inventive in its range of applications this book will be of value to students studying sociology, social policy, politics and community development.

Action Research

Action research

Action research is a form of social inquiry which seeks to bring together action and reflection and theory and practice. In so doing, it deconstructs the relationship between researchers and those conventionally seen as their ‘subjects’ by empowering the latter as participants through joint working and the cogeneration of knowledge, with the view to effecting social change. As such, action research is particularly pertinent to research with communities of disadvantage.

Section Outline: This chapter begins by outlining the central tenets of action research. After a brief discussion of the origins of this approach to social inquiry, it goes on to discuss the key relationships of power in the research process, and in the light of identifying these, the specific political orientation of action research. ...

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