For instance, the way that programme managers in the example projects choose which evaluative tools and methods to use may be shaped by normative beliefs surrounding the nature of evidence. pragmatism paradigm in addressing a particular research problem. This ecological understanding of the interlinkages between inquiry, experience, knowing and acting addresses many of the weakness in existing organizational research. Hence, ambiguities in the data such as contradictions between management and operational staff, or between the formal documentation and informal organizational practices, were easier to approach. In social research, the term “paradigm” is used to refer to the philosophical assumptions or to the... 2. Pragmatist inquiry also reminded us to keep the perspective of the research participants in mind. In addition, as both researchers are practitioners within the NGO sector, we were keenly aware of NGOs’ limited resources and were concerned about our use of NGOs’ time. Besides critical research and sometimes positivism, qualitative research in information systems can be performed following a paradigm of pragmatism. The email address and/or password entered does not match our records, please check and try again. Some society journals require you to create a personal profile, then activate your society account, You are adding the following journals to your email alerts, Did you struggle to get access to this article? Kelly, 2017, 2019a; Kelly and Smith, 2017; Rogers et al., 2019). Contrary to the positivist paradigm, theory should generate from the data . Mixed Methods Research: A Research Paradigm Whose Time Has Come by R. Burke Johnson and Anthony.J. Cordeiro and Kelly, 2019; Kelly, 2016, 2018, 2019b, 2020). At each stage of the research process, we interrogated and evaluative our ideas and interpretations in terms of their practical functioning. Pragmatism as a research paradigm finds its philosophical foundation in the... 3. However, there is a risk of method choice being driven by the ‘what works’ maxim . Elements of the data collection stage where we found it valuable to use pragmatist ideas to guide research choices included the scope and sequence of data collection methods, the researchers’ stance and ethical considerations for data collection. One of the researchers (Project example 2) drew strongly on concepts from other disciplines so she felt she could add value to NGOs by helping them cross a disciplinary border. Pragmatism as a philosophy may aid researchers in positioning themselves somewhere in the spectrum between qualitatively driven … Pragmatism is a philosophical tradition that considers words and thought as tools and instruments for prediction, problem solving, and action, and rejects the idea that the function of thought is to describe, represent, or mirror reality. As noted by Farjoun et al. This paper has picked out interpretivism and pragmatism as two possible and important research paradigms for qualitative research in information systems. By encouraging organizational stakeholders to trace out the likely consequences of different lines of action, researchers are able to gain a more detailed understanding of the phenomena under investigation. This is due to considerable diversity within and between organizations working in these fields, rendering esoteric theoretical models of limited value to practice (Friedrichs and Kratochwil, 2009). Keywords: paradigms; pragmatism; research methodology F or the past two decades, much of the discussion in social science research methods has focused on the distinction between Qualitative Researchand Quantitative Research. In addition to identifying and including new evidence, the field notes also captured elements of the discourse that NGOs were excluding. Pragmatist inquiry enables researchers to embed ethical considerations in the research process. This paradigm is associated with action, intervention and constructive knowledge. By scanning both theoretical and grey literature for knowledge gaps of practical use to the case study organizations, we were able to inform and refine the research objectives. The epistemological framework guiding the doctoral project examples discussed in this article most closely aligns with classical pragmatism, particularly the approach taken by Dewey and latter-day pragmatists that emphasize pragmatism as a unique, guiding philosophy for research in the social sciences. In Dewey’s approach, there is no distinct boundary between everyday life and research (Morgan, 2014b). As a new paradigm, pragmatism disrupts the assumptions of older approaches based on the philosophy of knowledge, while providing promising new directions for understanding the nature of social research. The pragmatic research philosophy encompassed six fundamental theses. What can it offer contemporary organization theory? These pragmatists declared that truth could be judged by its consequences. While this approach is compatible with qualitative-dominant interpretivist understandings of socially constructed reality, the emphasis is on interrogating the value and meaning of research data through examination of its practical consequences (Morgan, 2014b). 1 (1997): 175-208. We suggest that pragmatism is a particularly worthy paradigm to guide research that seeks to provide a public good by improving practice and policy while remaining true to the quality-driven rigours of academic research. Lee & Nickerson (2010) state that pragmatism is a more adequate research paradigm for design research than positivism. Crossref . Likewise, the process of framing of research questions based on practical understanding of organizational decision-making processes (Project example 2) revealed the diversity of views between board members and staff in NGOs. Pragmatism guides the project examples used in this article. The other researcher (Project example 1) aimed to compensate NGOs for their time by providing them with ongoing resources, peer review and contacts as applicable. View or download all content the institution has subscribed to. A pragmatist view was vital in ensuring the validity of our conclusions and in delivering on practical research outputs for the case study organizations who took part in our research projects. To read the fulltext, please use one of the options below to sign in or purchase access. Maya Cordeiro has over 20 years of experience in community-based research and development; and as a monitoring and evaluation advisor to aid agencies and international NGOs. These will be particularly effective for Project example 2, which has been working with NGO peak bodies and funders. Pragmatism, which provides a guiding framework anchored in practicality, is particularly appropriate for these studies examining performance measurement and evaluation in applied NGO settings. as an analytic lens, a way of viewing the world and a framework from which to understand the human experience (Kuhn, 1962). In Project example 2, a survey provided additional data to validate initial interviews with managers and better scope the challenges experienced by project implementers. Similarly, in Project example 1, many respondents highlighted that they had never considered the worth of evaluation. For James, the pragmatic maxim was a window into the way people think, formulate ideas, experiment and construct new habits (Ormerod, 2006). Although advocates of mixed-methods research have proposed pragmatism as a paradigm for social research, nearly all of that work has emphasized the practical rather than the philosophical aspects of pragmatism. This included executives, board members, programme implementing staff and volunteers. Onwuegbuzie The purposes of this article are to position mixed methods research (mixed research is a synonym) as the natural complement to tradi-tional qualitative and quantitative research, to present pragmatism Miad Ranjbar, Honours, B.Sc., York University, 2011 . For more information view the SAGE Journals Sharing page. We suggest that pragmatism is a particularly worthy paradigm to guide research that seeks to provide a public good by improving practice and policy while remaining true to the quality-driven rigours of academic research. presented to Ryerson University . Mixed methods research is characterized by the integration of philosophical views related to qualitative and quantitative research. Note that I have capitalized these two terms to distinguish them from the more technical issues deal-ing with qualitative and quantitative methods. Members of _ can log in with their society credentials below, article is distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial 4.0 License (. Paradigm is the skylight through which one can view in the world. This is the purpose of this paper: To explore the possible meanings of pragmatism in terms of ways to conduct research. Click the button below for the full-text content, 24 hours online access to download content. By seeking a better understanding of the organizational processes under investigation, and documenting actions and experiences of staff, whether well-planned or haphazard, pragmatist researchers are able to surface complex themes and issues hidden in formal documentation or rhetoric. Thus, it was through Dewey’s work that the classical pragmatism movement reached its peak and came to be applied in all areas of philosophy as well as in psychology, education and politics (Morgan, 2014b). This paper attempts to justify the position of post-positivism as a rich paradigm for educational research, specifically pedagogical research. This survey focused on practitioners’ experiences of NGO performance measurement processes and decision-making processes, enabling comparison with formal documentation, as well as the views of NGO leaders and boards. Qualitative research is often associated with interpretivism, but alternatives do exist. In pragmatist research, this flexible and adaptive form of data collection and analysis is referred to as abduction. 4 (1992): 813-840; Sandbothe, ed., Die Renaissance des Pragmatismus; see also the credit given to Putnam by Rorty (Richard Rorty, ‘Relativism’, 42) and vice versa (Hilary Putnam, ‘A Half Century of Philosophy, Viewed From Within’, Deadalus 126, no. By refusing to succumb to ‘naturalizing’ tendencies, pragmatism is able Resurgence of Pragmatism, Social Research 59, no. As discussed below, these principles have particular relevance to research on NGOs but also have a wider application in other organizations. concurrently in our investigation in social and also in behavioural sciences. Transactions of the Institute of British Geographers, Pragmatism as a Paradigm for Social Research. In Project example 1, pragmatism helped identify the need to engage deeply with staff at the project implementation level. Our dissemination strategies pragmatically centre on informing and engaging practitioners, where possible, in discussions on our findings. This article addresses that gap by connecting John Dewey’s work on experience and inquiry to current issues in the study of social research. Keeping respondents in a communication loop enabled respondents to feel invested in the research and send impromptu updates of their evaluation journeys. In Project example 2, this included multi-year comparisons to ascertain changes in the way case study NGOs had positioned performance data on their websites and in their annual reports. Declaration of conflicting interestsThe author(s) declared no potential conflicts of interest with respect to the research, authorship and/or publication of this article. pragmatism as a research paradigm, articulate our thoughts about how pragmatism fits within social work research, and illustrate how it is linked to the pursuit of social justice. This chapter provides an overview of pragmatism as a paradigm for research in the social sciences. Vibha Kaushik, Christine A. Walsh, Pragmatism as a Research Paradigm and Its Implications for Social Work Research, Social Sciences, 10.3390/socsci8090255, 8, 9, (255), (2019). This paper has picked out interpretivism and pragmatism as two … Dear Salma, I found it very useful and learn lots out of it. pragmatism is … As a new paradigm, pragmatism disrupts the assumptions of older approaches based on the philosophy of knowledge, while providing promising new directions for understanding the nature of social research. in information systems can be performed following a paradigm of pragmatism. . Whereas structural models, which are also popular with organizational theorists, provide for a more static view of organizational life. Pragmatism’s inherent focus on experience and action helped refine the research problems under investigation. This dissemination strategy involves roundtable workshopping events and practice-based publications (e.g. Reflexivity permits a more nuanced and context-specific understanding of how research processes and relationships are constituted and how they affect theory and its future consequences (Weick, 2002). This site uses cookies. This can be achieved through triangulation of what respondents say and what can be observed. Clarifying the three principles of pragmatism helped us target data collection and strengthen the depth and quality of analysis. CRITICAL EVALUATION OF DIFFERENT RESEARCH PARADIGMS Abstract: ... of paradigms – from realism to positivism and from social constructivism to pragmatism. For instance, initial inquiry into programme evaluation (Project example 1) revealed distinctions between how head office and field office staff enact evaluation and the consequences of these actions. PRAGMATISM AS A RESEARCH PARADIGM IN THE SOCIAL STUDY OF CHILDREN . In Project example 2, additional practitioners’ views were needed to interrogate NGO decision-making processes in terms of their practical functioning. These principles, when applied to research on organizational processes, such as performance measurement and evaluation, provide the rationale for pragmatism as a worthy and useful paradigm to guide research. Ethically, the challenge was to value all different types of knowledge. As noted earlier, one of the critiques levelled against pragmatism is the lack of a clearly articulated logic about who decides what knowledge is legitimate and useful. In 1878, he outlined what became known as the ‘pragmatic maxim’, a rule for clarifying the content of concepts and hypothesis by tracing their practical consequences and thereby, grounding inquiry in issues of human significance (Peirce, 1878). Paradigms in Social Science. This paradigm is totally opposite to positivist paradigm and constructivism. These principles are (1) an emphasis on actionable knowledge, (2) recognition of the interconnectedness between experience, knowing and acting and (3) a view of inquiry as an experiential process. In social science research, Pragmatic Paradigm was proposed as a philosophical basis for Mixed Methods Research (MMR) (Morgan, 2007; Mertens, 2010; Creswell, 2014), supporting a third option to qualitative and quantitative methods dichotomy. Its fluidity allowed for abductive, inductive and deductive reasoning, which supported inclusion of emerging ideas and data. Pragmatism’s focus on the production of actionable knowledge is of particular benefit to research with non-government organizations, ensuring that research is contextually relevant as well as informed by theory. In Project example 1, pragmatism effected sequencing by allowing a level of flexibility unusual in many other frameworks. She holds Bachelor’s and Master’s degrees in sociology and development studies. Building on the definition above, we outline three methodological principles for pragmatic inquiry which serve as a critical lens for researchers to conceptualize and manage research projects in line with classical pragmatism. By emphasizing this principle of actionable knowledge as a starting point for research, researchers can develop research agendas anchored in respondent experiences and, hence, ensure the research is of practical relevance. The pragmatic paradigm refers to a worldview that focuses on “what works” rather than what might be considered absolutely and objectively “true” or “real.” Early pragmatists rejected the idea that social inquiry using a single scientific method could access truths regarding the real world. Pragmatism research philosophy accepts concepts to be relevant only if they support action. This contrasts with other organizational research, which may be more static and theory-driven. These two doctoral projects offer complementary and practical examples of how pragmatism can be used to strengthen research processes. You can be signed in via any or all of the methods shown below at the same time. Before carrying out the empirical analysis of the role of management culture in corporate social responsibility, identification of the philosophical approach and the paradigm on which the research carried out is based is necessary. Moreover, by encouraging organizational stakeholders to trace out the likely consequences of different understandings or actions, we were able to gain a more detailed understanding of the phenomena under investigation. The use of rational choice models by many organizational theorists has focused research on individual, rational agents and limited the scope to understand complexity and diversity in organizations. The sub-headings are set out in a linear fashion, despite the research processes being iterative and more complex than this reductive layout would suggest. Article Opposing bookish knowledge and formal education, pragmatism lays great stress upon the development. As noted previously, both projects involved respondents with differing levels of knowledge, experience and control over the process being studied. Therefore, mixed methods. I use the term ‘paradigm’ not in Kuhn's but in a broader sense, roughly meaning ‘explanatory framework’ (e.g. The following are popular known pragmatic philosophical stands that may be used to justify pragmatism as a paradigm when conducting mixed methods research (MMR). 2 Agenda Pragmatism as a research paradigm in social research Three kinds of pragmatism Practice research vs. Action reserach Constructive knowledge & practical theory Documentation Goldkuhl G (2008) Practical inquiry as action research and beyond, in Proceedings of the 16th European Conference on Information Systems, Galway Goldkuhl G (2008) What kind of pragmatism in Access to society journal content varies across our titles. At this stage, pragmatism enabled the researchers to manage dynamic and iterative analytical processes. Overview of the research project examples. pragmatism makes in the research process is an adequate pragmatic question to pose and answer. For the purpose of this article, this concise understanding of the projects will suffice to provide context. By demonstrating the suitability of this approach for research on NGOs, this article contributes to the growing literature supporting pragmatism as a potential paradigm for organizational research (Elkjaer and Simpson, 2011; Farjoun et al., 2015; Lorino, 2018). Clarifying the three principles of pragmatism helped us target data collection and strengthen the depth and quality of analysis. In doing so, it also addresses the political concerns that link pragmatism and social justice. As discussed below, pragmatism contributes to a dynamic paradigm that corresponds with the complex and fluctuating context in which organizations operate. The principles are drawn from existing literature and similar categorizations of pragmatist methodology developed by theorists such as Friedrichs and Kratochwil (2009) and Morgan (2014b). Login failed. These are staff who exhibit what Patton (2008) calls ‘the personal factor’, a trait recognizable in ‘people who personally care about . The article focuses on three core methodological principles that underlie a pragmatic approach to inquiry: (1) an emphasis on actionable knowledge, (2) recognition of the interconnectedness between experience, knowing and acting and (3) inquiry as an experiential process. December 16, 2016 Reply. This feature is particularly relevant to NGOs as, often, organizational processes are not properly documented and, to a large extent, rely on the knowledge and interpretations of implementing staff. This enabled the researcher to witness different forms of evaluation that staff had not identified in interviews. Dewey suggested that all human experience involves some amount of interpretation – interpreting knowledge and beliefs leads to action and reflecting on actions leads to new ways of knowing and acting (Morgan, 2014a). If you have the appropriate software installed, you can download article citation data to the citation manager of your choice. This principle was particularly valuable in guiding our sampling strategies; helping us identify information-rich respondents most likely to provide useful practice-based knowledge, as well as ensuring the sampling process uncovered a range of perspectives. Pragmatics recognise that there are many different ways of interpreting the world and undertaking research, that no single point of view can ever give the entire picture and that there may be multiple realities[1] According to pragmatism research philosophy, research question is the most important determinant of the research philosophy. By starting with organizational practices prioritized by case study NGOs (as evidenced by multiple documents from each NGO), the researcher could hone in on those organizational practices that were most likely to have relevance for the sector as a whole. This embeddedness of inquiry in practical, everyday situations makes classical pragmatism relevant to theoreticians and practitioners alike. Thus, rather than being bound by pragmatism’s inherent focus on practice, we have used the focus on practice as a driver for new ways of knowing and understanding. The following section examines how pragmatism can be incorporated throughout the research process in relation to these three principles using our doctoral research as worked examples. For the new researcher the choice of the right paradigm and research methodology is a difficult task. This paradigm is associated with action, intervention and constructive knowledge. By building in scope to explore the diverse experiences of different individuals at the level of the research questions, we were able to identify more facets of the research problem than if these were solely framed around the theoretical literature, formal NGO documentation or our existing understanding of NGO processes. This was achieved through acknowledging the interconnectedness between experience, knowing and acting – a key pragmatist principle, throughout the analysis and final write-up stages. For Peirce (2014), the meaning of any concept was inextricably linked with its experiential consequences when investigated. The following section unpacks this notion by demonstrating how applying three principles of pragmatism enriched key decisions at every stage of the research process for each of our doctoral theses. This necessitated a qualitative approach with interviews and participant observation of programme staff, to supplement the limited formal documentation. Focused ethnography was a pragmatic choice as there was no scope for the long-term immersion of conventional ethnographic approaches, yet many aspects of ethnography were considered vital for surfacing consequences of action which would have remained hidden from other forms of inquiry (Kelly, 2019c). the site you are agreeing to our use of cookies. In doing so, it also addresses the political concerns that link pragmatism and social justice. This finding was uncovered by asking respondents to think of performance measurement practices and evaluations they had found useful and to describe the value of these practices. Others contend that the practical, real-world emphasis can encourage researchers to take a ‘soft’ approach avoiding the significance of distinctions, such as between quantitative and qualitative research, at an epistemological level (Denzin, 2010: 422). This paper has picked out interpretivism and pragmatism as two possible … However, because these systems were in their infancy, descriptions of these systems or reflection on what was working and what was not had not been formally documented. Pragmatism is a paradigm that includes ideas, methods, approaches, principals, or a mix of these to explain a solution to a research problem. The final section of the paper advocates a "pragmatic approach" as a new guiding paradigm in social science research methods, both as a basis for supporting work that combines qualitative and quantitative methods and as a way to redirect our attention to methodological rather than metaphysical concerns. Researchers stand for different paradigms- positivism, post-positivism, constructivism, critical theory, participatory. This involves collecting pertinent observations about the study phenomenon and, at the same time, applying concepts from existing fields of knowledge, instead of either relying solely on abstract concepts (deduction) or developing propositions based solely on observations (induction). Its roots can be traced back to academic scepticism over the possibility of achieving perfect knowledge or truth through positivist scientific practice (Ormerod, 2006) The first wave of pragmatism, often referred to as ‘classical pragmatism’, is attributed to the work of Charles Peirce, William James and John Dewey. By emphasizing the principle of actionable knowledge right through the research process, we were able to achieve research outcomes that were relevant, transferrable and contributed to both the theory and practice of NGO performance management and evaluation. The pragmatic principles adopted encouraged her to be multi-disciplinary to provide NGOs with knowledge from other disciplines to augment their practice. This is strengthened through presentation and analysis of three methodological principles of pragmatism, used as a framework to detail the project examples. In regard to research on organizations, an iterative focus on actionable knowledge maintains the connectivity of the inquiry process to evolving organizational practice and emergent problems. Dewey’s Concept of Inquiry as a Basis for Research, Pragmatism and the philosophical foundations of mixed methods research, Moments, mixed methods, and paradigm dialogs, Propositions, warranted assertibility and truth, The paradigm wars and their aftermath: A “historical” sketch of research and teaching since 1989, Paradigmatic controversies, contradictions, and emerging confluences, Pragmatism, evidence, and mixed methods evaluation (Special Issue: Mixed methods and credibility of evidence in evaluation), Feminist approaches to triangulation: Uncovering subjugated knowledge and fostering social change in mixed methods research, Introduction: Pushing on the methodological boundaries: The growing need for emergent methods within and across the disciplines, Against the quantitative-qualitative incompatibility thesis or dogmas die hard, Mixed methods research: A research paradigm whose time has come, “What a long, strange trip it’s been…”: Twenty-Five years of qualitative and new paradigm research, Pragmatic threads in mixed methods research in the social sciences: The search for multiple modes of inquiry and the end of the philosophy of formalism, Mixed methods and the politics of human research: The transformative-emancipatory perspective, Paradigms lost and pragmatism regained: Methodological implications of combining qualitative and quantitative methods, Overview of contemporary issues in mixed methods research. It also addresses a key challenge in organizational research which is for the researcher to develop a ‘mediated’ understanding of complex organizational processes (Lorino et al., 2010: 778). This paper has picked out interpretivism and pragmatism as two possible and important research paradigms for qualitative research in information systems. Find out about Lean Library here, If you have access to journal via a society or associations, read the instructions below. The many similarities between the two projects lend consistency to the findings, while the differences highlight potential diverse applications for pragmatism. Hence, it was important for the researchers to develop a relationship of openness to surface new perspectives rather than prompt or direct respondents. Pragmatism’s Advantage Abstract In this paper, the author argues that within the current philosophical debate, pragmatism has a distinct advantage over its rivals on the one hand, Anglo-American analytic philosophy and, on the other hand, continental philosophy. View or download all the content the society has access to. Our research projects were driven by intentions to make valuable contributions to NGOs. Simply select your manager software from the list below and click on download. Pragmatism Master of Arts . Keywords mixed-methods design, methodologies, pragmatism, methods of inquiry, John Dewey. This chapter provides an overview of pragmatism as a paradigm for research in the social sciences. This paper brings together three streams of social science literature (paradigms, tourism research and strategic alliance practice) in order to further the debate on the need to adopt an appropriate paradigm in tourism research.
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