Mike Desjardins has suggested the following . Some European Union directives describe action plans in order to reach a defined target in air quality or noise reduction.
If the target cannot be reached by a member state, the member needs to write a report. Sometimes action plans contain deadlines by which the plan must be ready to start the action s and the targets are to be reached. From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia. Archived from the original PDF on 20 October Retrieved 19 October Retrieved 23 October Retrieved 27 October Retrieved 25 October Developing a Strategic Plan".
Archived from the original on 27 March Pmp Dobson 12 March Retrieved 26 October Retrieved 22 March Retrieved from " https: Environmental protection Action plans Business term stubs Environment stubs.
All articles with unsourced statements Articles with unsourced statements from October All stub articles. Each of these types comes in multiple variants, with different voltage sensitivity and different temporal dynamics. The most intensively studied type of voltage-dependent ion channels comprises the sodium channels involved in fast nerve conduction. These are sometimes known as Hodgkin-Huxley sodium channels because they were first characterized by Alan Hodgkin and Andrew Huxley in their Nobel Prize-winning studies of the biophysics of the action potential, but can more conveniently be referred to as Na V channels.
The "V" stands for "voltage". An Na V channel has three possible states, known as deactivated , activated , and inactivated. The channel is permeable only to sodium ions when it is in the activated state. When the membrane potential is low, the channel spends most of its time in the deactivated closed state.
If the membrane potential is raised above a certain level, the channel shows increased probability of transitioning to the activated open state. The higher the membrane potential the greater the probability of activation. Once a channel has activated, it will eventually transition to the inactivated closed state. It tends then to stay inactivated for some time, but, if the membrane potential becomes low again, the channel will eventually transition back to the deactivated state.
This is only the population average behavior, however — an individual channel can in principle make any transition at any time. However, the likelihood of a channel's transitioning from the inactivated state directly to the activated state is very low: A channel in the inactivated state is refractory until it has transitioned back to the deactivated state. The outcome of all this is that the kinetics of the Na V channels are governed by a transition matrix whose rates are voltage-dependent in a complicated way.
Since these channels themselves play a major role in determining the voltage, the global dynamics of the system can be quite difficult to work out.
Hodgkin and Huxley approached the problem by developing a set of differential equations for the parameters that govern the ion channel states, known as the Hodgkin-Huxley equations. These equations have been extensively modified by later research, but form the starting point for most theoretical studies of action potential biophysics. As the membrane potential is increased, sodium ion channels open, allowing the entry of sodium ions into the cell.
This is followed by the opening of potassium ion channels that permit the exit of potassium ions from the cell. The inward flow of sodium ions increases the concentration of positively charged cations in the cell and causes depolarization, where the potential of the cell is higher than the cell's resting potential. The sodium channels close at the peak of the action potential, while potassium continues to leave the cell. The efflux of potassium ions decreases the membrane potential or hyperpolarizes the cell.
This results in a runaway condition whereby the positive feedback from the sodium current activates even more sodium channels.
Thus, the cell fires , producing an action potential. Currents produced by the opening of voltage-gated channels in the course of an action potential are typically significantly larger than the initial stimulating current.
Thus, the amplitude, duration, and shape of the action potential are determined largely by the properties of the excitable membrane and not the amplitude or duration of the stimulus. This all-or-nothing property of the action potential sets it apart from graded potentials such as receptor potentials , electrotonic potentials , and synaptic potentials , which scale with the magnitude of the stimulus. A variety of action potential types exist in many cell types and cell compartments as determined by the types of voltage-gated channels, leak channels , channel distributions, ionic concentrations, membrane capacitance, temperature, and other factors.
The principal ions involved in an action potential are sodium and potassium cations; sodium ions enter the cell, and potassium ions leave, restoring equilibrium. Relatively few ions need to cross the membrane for the membrane voltage to change drastically. The ions exchanged during an action potential, therefore, make a negligible change in the interior and exterior ionic concentrations. The few ions that do cross are pumped out again by the continuous action of the sodium—potassium pump , which, with other ion transporters , maintains the normal ratio of ion concentrations across the membrane.
Calcium cations and chloride anions are involved in a few types of action potentials, such as the cardiac action potential and the action potential in the single-cell alga Acetabularia , respectively. Although action potentials are generated locally on patches of excitable membrane, the resulting currents can trigger action potentials on neighboring stretches of membrane, precipitating a domino-like propagation.
In contrast to passive spread of electric potentials electrotonic potential , action potentials are generated anew along excitable stretches of membrane and propagate without decay. Regularly spaced unmyelinated patches, called the nodes of Ranvier , generate action potentials to boost the signal. Known as saltatory conduction , this type of signal propagation provides a favorable tradeoff of signal velocity and axon diameter.
Depolarization of axon terminals , in general, triggers the release of neurotransmitter into the synaptic cleft. In addition, backpropagating action potentials have been recorded in the dendrites of pyramidal neurons , which are ubiquitous in the neocortex.
A neuron 's ability to generate and propagate an action potential changes during development. How much the membrane potential of a neuron changes as the result of a current impulse is a function of the membrane input resistance. As a cell grows, more channels are added to the membrane, causing a decrease in input resistance.
A mature neuron also undergoes shorter changes in membrane potential in response to synaptic currents. Neurons from a ferret lateral geniculate nucleus have a longer time constant and larger voltage deflection at P0 than they do at P Immature neurons are more prone to synaptic depression than potentiation after high frequency stimulation.
In the early development of many organisms, the action potential is actually initially carried by calcium current rather than sodium current. The opening and closing kinetics of calcium channels during development are slower than those of the voltage-gated sodium channels that will carry the action potential in the mature neurons.
The longer opening times for the calcium channels can lead to action potentials that are considerably slower than those of mature neurons. During development, this time decreases to 1 ms. There are two reasons for this drastic decrease. First, the inward current becomes primarily carried by sodium channels. In order for the transition from a calcium-dependent action potential to a sodium-dependent action potential to proceed new channels must be added to the membrane.
If Xenopus neurons are grown in an environment with RNA synthesis or protein synthesis inhibitors that transition is prevented. If action potentials in Xenopus myocytes are blocked, the typical increase in sodium and potassium current density is prevented or delayed.
This maturation of electrical properties is seen across species. Xenopus sodium and potassium currents increase drastically after a neuron goes through its final phase of mitosis. Several types of cells support an action potential, such as plant cells, muscle cells, and the specialized cells of the heart in which occurs the cardiac action potential.
However, the main excitable cell is the neuron , which also has the simplest mechanism for the action potential. Neurons are electrically excitable cells composed, in general, of one or more dendrites, a single soma , a single axon and one or more axon terminals. Dendrites are cellular projections whose primary function is to receive synaptic signals. Their protrusions, known as dendritic spines , are designed to capture the neurotransmitters released by the presynaptic neuron.
They have a high concentration of ligand-gated ion channels. These spines have a thin neck connecting a bulbous protrusion to the dendrite. This ensures that changes occurring inside the spine are less likely to affect the neighboring spines. The dendritic spine can, with rare exception see LTP , act as an independent unit. The dendrites extend from the soma, which houses the nucleus , and many of the "normal" eukaryotic organelles. Unlike the spines, the surface of the soma is populated by voltage activated ion channels.
These channels help transmit the signals generated by the dendrites. Emerging out from the soma is the axon hillock. This region is characterized by having a very high concentration of voltage-activated sodium channels.
In general, it is considered to be the spike initiation zone for action potentials,  i. Multiple signals generated at the spines, and transmitted by the soma all converge here. Immediately after the axon hillock is the axon. This is a thin tubular protrusion traveling away from the soma. The axon is insulated by a myelin sheath. Myelin is composed of either Schwann cells in the peripheral nervous system or oligodendrocytes in the central nervous system , both of which are types of glial cells.
Although glial cells are not involved with the transmission of electrical signals, they communicate and provide important biochemical support to neurons. This insulation prevents significant signal decay as well as ensuring faster signal speed.
This insulation, however, has the restriction that no channels can be present on the surface of the axon. There are, therefore, regularly spaced patches of membrane, which have no insulation. These nodes of Ranvier can be considered to be "mini axon hillocks", as their purpose is to boost the signal in order to prevent significant signal decay.
At the furthest end, the axon loses its insulation and begins to branch into several axon terminals. These presynaptic terminals, or synaptic boutons, are a specialized area within the axon of the presynaptic cell that contains neurotransmitters enclosed in small membrane-bound spheres called synaptic vesicles.
Before considering the propagation of action potentials along axons and their termination at the synaptic knobs, it is helpful to consider the methods by which action potentials can be initiated at the axon hillock. The basic requirement is that the membrane voltage at the hillock be raised above the threshold for firing. Action potentials are most commonly initiated by excitatory postsynaptic potentials from a presynaptic neuron.
These neurotransmitters then bind to receptors on the postsynaptic cell. This binding opens various types of ion channels. This opening has the further effect of changing the local permeability of the cell membrane and, thus, the membrane potential.
If the binding increases the voltage depolarizes the membrane , the synapse is excitatory. If, however, the binding decreases the voltage hyperpolarizes the membrane , it is inhibitory. Whether the voltage is increased or decreased, the change propagates passively to nearby regions of the membrane as described by the cable equation and its refinements. Typically, the voltage stimulus decays exponentially with the distance from the synapse and with time from the binding of the neurotransmitter.
Some fraction of an excitatory voltage may reach the axon hillock and may in rare cases depolarize the membrane enough to provoke a new action potential. More typically, the excitatory potentials from several synapses must work together at nearly the same time to provoke a new action potential. Their joint efforts can be thwarted, however, by the counteracting inhibitory postsynaptic potentials. Neurotransmission can also occur through electrical synapses.
The free flow of ions between cells enables rapid non-chemical-mediated transmission. Rectifying channels ensure that action potentials move only in one direction through an electrical synapse.
The amplitude of an action potential is independent of the amount of current that produced it. In other words, larger currents do not create larger action potentials. Therefore, action potentials are said to be all-or-none signals, since either they occur fully or they do not occur at all.
In sensory neurons , an external signal such as pressure, temperature, light, or sound is coupled with the opening and closing of ion channels , which in turn alter the ionic permeabilities of the membrane and its voltage.
Some examples in humans include the olfactory receptor neuron and Meissner's corpuscle , which are critical for the sense of smell and touch , respectively. However, not all sensory neurons convert their external signals into action potentials; some do not even have an axon! For illustration, in the human ear , hair cells convert the incoming sound into the opening and closing of mechanically gated ion channels , which may cause neurotransmitter molecules to be released.
In similar manner, in the human retina , the initial photoreceptor cells and the next layer of cells comprising bipolar cells and horizontal cells do not produce action potentials; only some amacrine cells and the third layer, the ganglion cells , produce action potentials, which then travel up the optic nerve. In sensory neurons, action potentials result from an external stimulus. However, some excitable cells require no such stimulus to fire: They spontaneously depolarize their axon hillock and fire action potentials at a regular rate, like an internal clock.
The course of the action potential can be divided into five parts: During the rising phase the membrane potential depolarizes becomes more positive. The point at which depolarization stops is called the peak phase. At this stage, the membrane potential reaches a maximum.
Subsequent to this, there is a falling phase. During this stage the membrane potential becomes more negative, returning towards resting potential. The undershoot, or afterhyperpolarization, phase is the period during which the membrane potential temporarily becomes more negatively charged than when at rest hyperpolarized.
Finally, the time during which a subsequent action potential is impossible or difficult to fire is called the refractory period , which may overlap with the other phases. The course of the action potential is determined by two coupled effects.
This changes the membrane's permeability to those ions. This sets up the possibility for positive feedback , which is a key part of the rising phase of the action potential.
The voltages and currents of the action potential in all of its phases were modeled accurately by Alan Lloyd Hodgkin and Andrew Huxley in , [i] for which they were awarded the Nobel Prize in Physiology or Medicine in In reality, there are many types of ion channels,  and they do not always open and close independently.
A typical action potential begins at the axon hillock  with a sufficiently strong depolarization, e. This depolarization is often caused by the injection of extra sodium cations into the cell; these cations can come from a wide variety of sources, such as chemical synapses , sensory neurons or pacemaker potentials. For a neuron at rest, there is a high concentration of sodium and chloride ions in the extracellular fluid compared to the intracellular fluid while there is a high concentration of potassium ions in the intracellular fluid compared to the extracellular fluid.
The increasing voltage in turn causes even more sodium channels to open, which pushes V m still further towards E Na. Consequently, this means that the aim of the inquiry and the research questions develop out of the convergence of two perspectives—that of science and of practice.
In the best case, both sides benefit from the research process. Everyday practices, which have long since established themselves as a subject of inquiry, introduce their own perspective, namely, the way people deal with the existential challenges of everyday life. The participatory research process enables co-researchers to step back cognitively from familiar routines, forms of interaction, and power relationships in order to fundamentally question and rethink established interpretations of situations and strategies.
However, the convergence of the perspectives of science and practice does not come about simply by deciding to conduct participatory research. Rather, it is a very demanding process that evolves when two spheres of action—science and practice—meet, interact, and develop an understanding for each other.
The unity and justification of participatory research are to be found not so much on the level of concrete research methods. Rather, participatory research can be regarded as a methodology that argues in favor of the possibility, the significance, and the usefulness of involving research partners in the knowledge-production process BERGOLD, Participatory approaches are not fundamentally distinct from other empirical social research procedures. On the contrary, there are numerous links, especially to qualitative methodologies and methods.
In practice, the participatory research style manifests itself in numerous participatory research strategies. Because of the individuality and self-determination of the research partners in the participatory research process, these strategies cannot be canonized in the form of a single, cohesive methodological approach, such as, for example, the narrative interview or qualitative content analysis.
The dictum of process orientation and the appropriateness of the method to the subject under study FLICK, is even more important in participatory research than in other approaches to qualitative research.
In our view, in order to gain a deeper insight into the contextual structuredness of meaning and the dynamism inherent in social action, it is worthwhile considering the inclusion of participatory research elements in research designs. Moreover, we believe that—precisely because the participation of all research partners is the fundamental guiding principle for this research approach—a methodological design that can be classified as a participatory design process in the narrower sense, represents an attractive and fruitful knowledge-generating option when it comes to researching the social world in the sense of habitualized practice BERGOLD, In order to place the articles compiled in this special issue of FQS in an overarching context, we shall first provide a somewhat detailed introduction to participatory research.
After reading the contributions, we were prompted to engage productively with the characteristics, aspirations, and desiderata of participatory research. In the following sections we focus, in particular, on those areas in which further work needs to be done—or in which work has not yet commenced.
This will also help to identify the untapped knowledge-creating potential of qualitative methodologies. Because participatory methodology poses certain questions about knowledge and research in a radical way, it has the potential to draw attention to hitherto neglected areas in qualitative methodology and to stimulate their further development. Especially in the debate on action research , systematic reference is made to participatory research strategies.
Although there are numerous points of convergence between action research and participatory research, we believe that by identifying the differences between the two approaches one can more accurately define the distinctive features of participatory research cf.
Another good reason to undertake this differentiation is that a systematic discussion about a participatory methodology in the narrower sense is only just beginning. Numerous discussion strands, in which the participation of research partners is conceptualized in different ways, converge in the action research paradigm. The common aim of these approaches is to change social reality on the basis of insights into everyday practices that are obtained by means of participatory research—that is, collaborative research on the part of scientists, practitioners, service users, etc.
The articles in this special issue also differ in terms of thematic focus. A stronger accentuation of the participatory side can be observed in Hella v. She explores on the basis of community-based participatory research CBPR the preventive healthcare opportunities opened up by involving members of the researched community in the research.
Against the background of experiences in research with young people, the contributions by Audrey M. Jean RATH presents a participatory approach aimed at extending the possibilities of co-constructing experiences and meanings. She crafts poems from interview transcripts.
As part of a "layered text," these poems provide access to the many meanings explicitly and implicitly expressed in the interviews with the research partners.
And finally, in her article on the development of participatory projects after the collapse of the military dictatorship in Argentina, Sylvia LENZ demonstrates the importance of democracy as a context for participatory research.
The combination of practice change and collaborative research—as in the case of PAR—is possible and makes good sense. Nonetheless, action research and participatory research are also conducted separately, or applied with different emphases in one research project. Especially in health research, even research funders now recognize that the involvement of service users in the research process makes good sense.
In her article, COOK shows that, in the United Kingdom at least, public and patient involvement PPI in research is sometimes even explicitly required by funding bodies. In this framework, the primary aim is not to change practice in the course of research. Rather, the aim is to produce knowledge in collaboration between scientists and practitioners.
Therefore, some representatives of the participatory research paradigm stress that, besides the mere participation of co-researchers in the inquiry, participatory research involves a joint process of knowledge-production that leads to new insights on the part of both scientists and practitioners. From an action research viewpoint, reflection is not without consequences for people's everyday practices.
From a scientific perspective, however, producers of knowledge would be well advised initially to evade demands for pragmatic utility. Therefore, the following elaboration of distinctive features of participatory research is intended as an invitation to the qualitative community to make greater use of participatory research elements—especially if they do not share the aspirations for change that are characteristic of action research.
As the articles in this special issue reveal, participatory methods open up new and broader perspectives for the research of everyday practices, especially where the methodology and self-concept of qualitative social research are concerned.
These find expression in the basic principles of openness, communication, and the appropriateness of the method to the subject under study. Every type of research calls for social conditions that are conducive to the topic and to the epistemological approach in question. In contrast to nomothetic research, which can be carried out under almost any social conditions, participatory research requires a democratic social and political context. The participation of under-privileged demographic groups, and the social commitment demanded of the researchers, are possible only if there is a political framework that allows it.
The connection between democracy and participatory research can be clearly seen in Latin America, for example, where, after the collapse of dictatorships, a general increase in participation on the part of the population has been observed, and—linked to that—an upswing in both academically-driven and practitioner-driven participatory research LENZ, To put it pointedly: The possibility of conducting participatory research can be regarded as a litmus test for a society's democratic self-concept.
The authors point out that a society's understanding of democracy—as consensus democracy or majoritarian democracy—has consequences for the extent of participation, the research questions and aims, and the research results.
Participatory research requires a great willingness on the part of participants to disclose their personal views of the situation, their own opinions and experiences. In everyday life, such openness is displayed towards good and trusted friends, but hardly in institutional settings or towards strangers. The fear of being attacked for saying something wrong prevents people from expressing their views and opinions, especially when they appear to contradict what the others think.
However, participatory research specifically seeks these dissenting views; they are essential for the process of knowledge production because they promise a new and different take on the subject under study, and thereby enable the discovery of new aspects.
In order to facilitate sufficient openness, a "safe space" is needed, in which the participants can be confident that their utterances will not be used against them, and that they will not suffer any disadvantages if they express critical or dissenting opinions. It is not a question of creating a conflict-free space, but rather of ensuring that the conflicts that are revealed can be jointly discussed; that they can either be solved or, at least, accepted as different positions; and that a certain level of conflict tolerance is achieved.
The authors demonstrate how such communicative space must be produced anew in the various phases of the research process. They distinguish three phases in the process of participatory research: The authors also point out that the "practices of developing such communicative spaces are necessarily paradoxical and contradictory," with the result that negotiation processes must be continually engaged in.
Therefore, the research contract; the boundaries of the communicative space; the type of participation; leadership; opportunities to express anxiety; and the balance between order and chaos must be continually negotiated. The outcome of this negotiation process is a symbolic space in which, in the best case, the participants can trust each other and, thus, express their views on the subject under study. Although they draw on different concepts, authors continually stress how important it is that the research process open up spaces that facilitate communication.
They argue that it is decisive for research that a safe space be created in which openness, differences of opinion, conflicts, etc. With the acceptance of participatory research approaches by various funding bodies for example, the Department of Health in England and the World Bank , there are a growing number of programs that stipulate the use of participatory research strategies in the funded projects. However, "participation" is understood more as the involvement of any groups of people who are not professional researchers.
As a result, the concept "participatory research" loses its clear contours. A fundamental dichotomy can be observed in participatory research.
On the one hand, there are a large number of studies in which academic researchers and professional practitioners collaborate; the practitioners are either involved in the research or carry it out themselves with the support of professional researchers. Prototypes of this kind of research in English-speaking countries include participatory action research PAR , co-operative inquiry, and participatory evaluation; examples in German-speaking countries are action research and practice research HEINER, On the other hand, participatory research is conducted directly with the immediately affected persons; the aim is the reconstruction of their knowledge and ability in a process of understanding and empowerment.
In the majority of cases, these co-researchers are marginalized groups whose views are seldom sought, and whose voices are rarely heard. Normally, these groups have little opportunity to articulate, justify, and assert their interests. The basic dilemma revealed here is that these marginalized communities are in a very poor position to participate in participatory research projects, or to initiate such a project themselves. This can be observed clearly in two problem areas that are represented in contributions to this special issue, namely "psychiatric disorders" and "disabilities.
This has led to the development of theories and practices that may well be considered helpful by those affected, but may also be perceived as hegemonial knowledge.
Moreover, research is classified into different theoretical models depending on the labels used to describe the research partners—and this happens without explicit discussion see COOK, and RUSSO, This, too, can be clearly observed in the psychiatric area. The label "service user" denotes an extremely heterogeneous group that might also include the family, friends, and neighbors of the patient, in other words, everyone who is affected directly or indirectly by a certain service offering.
By using the term "consumer," research is classified into the economic market model; the term "patient" assigns it to the medical model; and, finally, the term "survivors" of psychiatric treatment classifies it into an alternative model of affected persons. Especially in England, psychiatric "survivors" stress the need for alternative models of psychiatric problems and ways of dealing with them—models that are not shaped by the medical model and thus by the economic interests of the medical profession and the pharmaceutical industry.
Moreover, they argue that the development of such alternative models calls for independent research that is completely controlled by the survivors themselves. When research is conducted together with the affected persons, the methodological question arises as to which persons, or groups of persons, should, or must, be involved.
This question must be addressed, especially in view of the fact that different groups have developed different knowledge in the area under study. Furthermore, it is the declared aim of participatory research to access and harness these different types of knowledge. Therefore, it is important to determine exactly which groups will contribute their knowledge to the joint research results.
Only by so doing, can the different types of knowledge be related to each other, and a possible practical use be outlined. It is generally argued that those persons, groups, and institutions who are affected by the research theme and the expected outcomes must be involved.
However, criticism is voiced that, when it comes to sampling, participatory approaches frequently rely on the utterances of the local participants or the client and that the sample is inadequate or faulty as a result see v.
Overall, what is lacking is a systematic procedure. However, there are various pragmatic strategies with which the groups to be included can be determined more exactly. UNGER presents a solution with which diverse groups such as users and their organizations, community leaders, citizens, clubs and societies, professional practitioners, professional societies, etc.
This can be carried out within the framework of a snowball system via those who are already included, and can take place step by step during the research process. The methodological problem lies in a distortion of the research process and outcomes if relevant actors are not prepared to get involved in the participatory research process, or if some field participants are quasi invisible.
These "invisible" field members can be groups who have been excluded by other actors, or who, for whatever reason, have not received information about the project. Moreover, it would appear plausible that the professional researchers cannot rely on the utterances of the field participants alone, because numerous exclusionary processes may occur in the field, and involvement in a participatory research project may represent a privilege and a distinction for which people compete.
However, these authors, too, do not go beyond a pragmatic list of groups of persons who may be disadvantaged by the procedure in question.
A systematic solution could be achieved only by a structural theory about the particular area under study. However, such a theory is frequently not available; nor can it be developed within the framework of individual projects. The social location of those people who are affected by the researched problem, who share a material or socio-psychological milieu, and have a common experiential background must be precisely identified.
This common background will—at least in theory—facilitate communication and joint action. Once it has been clarified who should be involved in the research project, further decisions must be made.
Which activities the co-researchers should—or can—participate in, and whether there should be different degrees of participation for different groups, are questions that are discussed in very different ways in the literature. Although developed with reference to citizen participation, it has been applied in various attempts to develop an overview of types of participation in research projects see account in v. These questions have been posed mainly by research participants—for example persons with experience of psychiatric institutions, or persons with learning difficulties—who have traditionally been regarded as objects of research, and who have only recently spoken out.
From this perspective, the proposal of ladder models that allow those on the lower rungs no control over research decisions, does little to clarify matters. Unless people are involved in decisions—and, therefore, research partners, or co- researchers—it is not participatory research. Ladder models suggest the existence of a continuum, and thereby blur basic differences COOK, Whether the affected persons are merely interviewed, or whether they participate directly in research decisions, possibly implies completely different social-policy and professional-policy backgrounds and underlying philosophical positions.
So-called "early" forms of participation, such as the briefing of professional researchers by those who are affected by the problem under study, can, at most, be described as preparatory joint activities that may facilitate participation in the research project at a later date. However, the problem with these forms of participation is that they may constitute "pseudo participation.
The phenomenon can also be observed in many other research fields, where such "early" forms of participation are abused in order to motivate the affected persons to co-operate and to disclose personal information by giving them the false impression that they have a say in the research process.
To distinguish the various types of participation, we consider it more appropriate to specify the decision-making situations in the research process, and the groups of participants, and to disclose who, with what rights, at what point in time, and with regard to what theme, can participate in decisions. Such a procedure is presented in the present special issue by v. The situation is quite different in the case of research projects controlled by the affected persons themselves—for example, "survivor-controlled research" ROSSO, Here, by definition, the persons who are directly affected participate in all decisions.
However, even in this case, it would appear necessary to specify who, or which group, participates in which decisions, because, here too, there are positions of power and competition between individuals or groups. The fundamental decision not to treat the research partners as objects of research, but rather as co-researchers and knowing subjects with the same rights as the professional researchers, gives rise to a number of questions about the material resources needed for participation.
As a rule, professional researchers receive a salary for their work—although, in academically-driven research, this remuneration is often quite low. Normally, the co-researchers receive—if anything—expenses, and they are expected to make their knowledge available free of charge. The taken-for-grantedness of this situation must be called into question because co-researchers frequently belong to lower social classes or marginalized groups and have limited material resources at their disposal.
This means that such resources must be guaranteed during their participation in the project. The necessity of material support is not limited to the remuneration of direct co-operation in the research process. Rather, people from marginalized, low-income groups also need other forms of material support. GOEKE and KUBANSKI point out that, besides paying an independence-enhancing research fee, the willingness of persons with disabilities to participate in research projects can be increased by the provision of assistance on site, and barrier-free access.
There is no rule about what material resources should be made available to research partners. It depends on the group in question. Resources provided could include travel expenses, childcare costs, food for participants with special dietary needs, compensation for loss of earnings, etc.
Such support for research partners has, of course, advantages and disadvantages. On the downside, "paid" participation can become a job like any other and can cause people to distance themselves from, or compete with, other community members. However, what is decisive is that remuneration signalizes social recognition of the value of the individual's contribution to research. If participatory research genuinely aims to put the relationship with research partners on an equal footing, then the socially dominant form of recognition must be used.
It should be noted that financial resources for the co-researchers must be allowed for when planning participatory research projects, and that funding bodies must be requested to accept the inclusion of such resources in the financial plan.
In the classical research setting, the relationship between researchers and researched seems to be clearly defined. Basically, it is a non-relationship in which the researcher is, as far as possible, neutral or invisible. Anything else is considered to lead to the distortion of the results or to threaten the internal validity. This situation changes radically when the relationship between the participants is put on a participatory footing.
In this case, the perspectives of the various partners and their differences of opinion are important for the process of discovery; objectivity and neutrality must be replaced by reflective subjectivity. This calls for willingness on the part of the research partners from the life-world under study to enter into the research process, and the necessary knowledge and ability to participate productively. An apparent dilemma inherent in participatory research becomes visible here.
On the one hand, participatory research aims, in particular, to involve marginalized groups in the production of knowledge and, by so doing, to foster empowerment. On the other hand, these are the very demographic groups who are characterized by a lack of competencies and social capital cf. For this reason, they are deemed also to be lacking the competencies necessary to participate in the research process. The only way out of this dilemma is to ask who defines these deficits and from what perspective.
The answer is obvious: They are defined by representatives of the dominant social group—in this case scientists—who specify the necessary knowledge and ability against the background of their familiar worldview and their methodological requirements. In this way, research becomes a very demanding task that calls for many competencies. By contrast, the primary aim of participatory research is to give members of marginalized groups a voice, or to enable them to make their voices heard.
What counts is that they bring their experiences, their everyday knowledge, and their ability into the research process and thereby gain new perspectives and insights RUSSO, The difference between the academic worldview and that of the research partners from the field is actually an asset which must be exploited in the exploration process.
Therefore, mutual curiosity about the knowledge and ability of those on the "other side" and what one can learn from them is so important. It enables all participants to acquire new roles and tasks that differ clearly from those of "classical" research. This means that all participants must change considerably in the course of the participatory research process—both on a personal and on a cognitive level.
And yet, the importance of the individual participant and his or her personal competencies, motivation, etc. It shapes how we respond within and to the research process. If we have control, it also shapes the research process itself.
In participatory research projects, professional researchers acquire new and unfamiliar roles—this is especially evident in the case of user-controlled research. However, role distribution in participatory research is not static. Rather, it is subject to continual change.
International Journal of Doctoral Studies Volume 11, Cite as: Avella, J. R. (). Delphi panels: Research design, procedures, advantages, and challenges.
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