Analytical Grid

Philippe Goujon, Stephen Rainey

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The analytical grid is a result of analysis of the theoretical background to civil society participation in research design. It is a distillation from more detailed research into, and critical analysis of, underlying themes in policy, history, society and philosophy as they appear in the (European) drive for participation in research. The grid permits a principled study of relevant cases and grounds tools of assessment that can inform policy design. The grid of analysis is deduced from the set of concepts most relevant to the research question. The research question represents a focus on a determinate field within an overall problematic. For example, if we take the overall field of CSO participation and limit it in a question regarding expectations, we can immediately decide that governance is a relevant concept here, as it is through governance that expectations between parties in participatory endeavours are expressed and negotiated. Although these may appear to be a partial reading based on our prior interests, they are intended as organising principles for interrogating the area we set out to make sense of and to analyse. They come from the analysis presented in deliverable 1.2, Theoretical Background and represent that background focussed through our project research question. The subsequent analysis will demonstrate that each of these parameters, criteria or concepts is extremely internally diverse. Whilst they are concepts frequently called upon by participants in research projects, there is not consistency in what their significance is.

Having thus seen this, we can go deeper and determine that within governance, given this problematic of expression and negotiation, democratic uses of dialogue must be dealt with. This allows us to use the broad distinction between, for instance, representative and deliberative democracy. In mining these concepts, and analysing their origins, manifestations, potential and limits, we therefore determine fundamental notions that underwrite the very concepts constitutive of the field that our question inhabits.

These notions can therefore serve as parameters for a grid of analysis because, with respect to the research question, they are pervasive and their presence, absence and construal represent all the possibilities for addressing the question in terms of the analysis undertaken. They appear here relatively unexplained – their justification comes in the argumentation and reasoning that constitute the bulk of this deliverable.

Using the grid allows a consistent orientation within the overall field of participation, and in particular within the section of the field most relevant to CSO participation in research design. It is also a means of assessment.

Methodologically, within CONSIDER, the grid provides a touchstone that ensures principled, coherent, salient information to be gathered. In particular, it ensures that CONSIDER answers the question it has set itself: How do actors define and reach their expectations related to defining public interest when constructing norms in research projects?
langue originaleAnglais
EditeurCommission of European Communities
Organe de commissionnementCommission Européenne - fp7
Nombre de pages36
Etat de la publicationPublié - 24 févr. 2013

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