The Politics of research partnerships in vocational and technical education
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This paper explores the political nature of research partnerships in vocational and technical education. Such research, by its nature, is seen as being unavoidably political, in the sense that its undertaking raises issues to do with the nature and distribution of ownership, interest, influence, benefit and threat in - and flowing from - the research practice. Reflection on a selection of case studies of research in the field point both to the diversity of activities that we contemporarily identify as research and to the diversity of significant issues raised in such research partnerships. Those issues are inerpreted through a framework of nine dimensions: (1) the types of knowledge intended from the research partnership; (2) the purposes of the research partnership; (3) the research approach; (4) the ownership of any epistemic gain from the research; (5) the degree of epistemic gain sought or expected from the research partnership; (6) the substantive focus of the research partnership; (7) the openness of the research; (8) the research beneficiaries; and (9) the ownership and resolution of any threats from the research. While these dimensions are largely epistemological in origin, they acquire political import in particular research partnerships to the extent that issues of difference arise on any of the dimensions. It is suggested that the optimum situation in research partnerships is where a coherent political profile is negotiated on these dimensions before they present any issues seriously threatening to the conduct and success of the research.
SEAMEO VOCTECH Journal
Copyright 2008 SEAMEO VOCTECH. The attached file is reproduced here in accordance with the copyright policy of the publisher. Please refer to the journal's website for access to the definitive, published version.
Education not elsewhere classified