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Title: So what's changed? : participatory action research through which diverse members co-evaluate their community organisation to creatively document their experiences and outcomes
Author: Lovell, Jacqueline Marie Grace
ISNI:       0000 0004 6421 1229
Awarding Body: University of Leeds
Current Institution: University of Leeds
Date of Award: 2016
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So many people do not tell their own stories, paint their own pictures, dance or sing to their own tunes, that it is hard, but not impossible I hope, to separate the authentic from the empty rhetoric. Authenticity of both process and experience was something actively sought within this research drawing as it did on a critical community psychology approach. In what I hoped would be a participatory action research process, an evaluation of a community organisation, led by people with lived experience of mental distress (myself included) was undertaken. Research questions focused on: the outcomes that mattered most to diverse member’s; and the fit of the participatory process with members of the newly formed So What’s Changed? Evaluation Team (SWC?ET). Whilst Participatory Video Production was the initial choice, collectively becoming stuck led to the co-development of a Body-mapping Evaluation Tool (B-mET). This supported co-researchers in documenting their past, present and hoped for future in relation to both them-selves and the organisation. A transactional analysis developmental theory Cycles of Power (Levin-Landheer, 1982) was used as a framework to map the PAR cycles that took place within this evaluation process. In addition, multi-modal thematic data analysis led to the creation of collective communication collages that privilege the visual and the voices of the co-researchers. The Universal Declaration of Human Rights was tentatively suggested as a framework for the outcomes that mattered most to members. What the participatory process offered was a shared, safe space in which to explore the ways in which members wanted to represent their experience. PVP initially proved useful and fitted as a tool to use within the group process. However, it did not fit when used individually. The body-mapping fitted with most though not all members. The knowledge gained, despite the challenges, supported members in the development of inter-personal relationships, awareness of self and others, knowledge and use of power and the subsequent activist and advocacy actions taken by SWC?ET members and for some within the wider community. Further research is planned to explore the use of creative methods, including digitisation of the B-mET tool, in evaluative work as a critical community psychologist in both an academic and an activist role.
Supervisor: Akhurst, Jacqui ; Gibson, Stephen Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available