ERG SES C 11, Educational Research
This paper introduces an exploratory study about the use of qualitative’ methods in urban educational research, and intend to share some personal narratives about his influence in the empirical approach of the fieldwork. The exploratory research aims to contribute to focus the study object and build a conceptual and methodological framework that supports this research process.
The exploratory research is about adult education practices and dynamics in a Lisbon neighborhood – Mouraria (traditional and multicultural). It departs from the wide perspective about non formal education (Rogers, 2004) and focuses in a very specific neighborhood context, refocusing the attention in neighborhood /community based educational projects (Whitehead, 2002).
The purpose of this research is to investigate the relationships established between practices, actors, agents/providers and the local urban territory (the analytical axes of the investigation). The territory locates and gives space to all these dynamics of non-formal adult education. In this sense the trajectory of the investigation itself follows a line of understanding of the global phenomenon of non-formal education for adults, in order to, subsequently, focusing the lens on the axes of specific meso, micro or even nano analysis. Thus it is necessary to know the paradigm of non-formal education and situate it in a broader context in space and time to better understand, the specificities of the neighborhood, practices, actors and agents/providers of such processes.
In the last decades, a vivid debate on the importance of local space and neighborhoods has taken place in urban studies. On the one hand, there is the suggestion that ‘the social’ is now disembodied from ‘the local’ and “de-territorialized”, undermining the neighborhood as a source of social relations (Castells, 1996; Wellman, 1999). On the other hand, other scholars have collected a bulk of empirical evidence showing the persistent importance of locality and neighborhoods in concrete daily life (Savage and al. 2005; Butler, 2012).
The public space of education shows how institutions, organizations, services and projects of different nature and objectives, which embody social, cultural and educational process, differ, and go beyond, conventional modes of schooling; with professionals and nonprofessionals in many areas, with different valences, or other differences, cities shows themselves as a stage for civic mobilization and education (Longworth 2008).
Intervention projects emerge, develop and (re)configure neighborhoods that become educational participatory platforms, generating diverse projects. In fact community and neighborhood based intervention projects and programs have been used as means to succeed in implementing health or social politics (Whitehead, 2002). Also in education there are some exploratory studies in this field, however neighborhood and community based interventions projects in education tend to be studied and analyzed as a strategy for a better educational learning levels in non-occidental countries or underprivileged neighborhoods (Poizat, 2003; Rogers, 2005).
BARRY, Wellman (Ed.) (1999). Networks in the Global Village: Life in Contemporary Communities. Boulder: Westview Press. BUTLER, Judith (2012). Can One Lead a Good life in a Bad Life? Radical Philosophy. Adorno Prize Lecture, September 11, 2012. Published Nov/Dec 2012. CARERI, F. (2002). El andar como práctica estética. Walking as an aesthetic practice. Barcelona: Gustavo Gil. CASTELLS, Manuel (1996). The Rise of the Network Society. The Information Age: Economy, Society and Culture Vol. I. Cambridge, MA; Oxford, UK: Blackwell. CORDEIRO, G.I. (2010). As Cidades Fazem-se por Dentro. Desafios da Etnografia Urbana. Cidades - Comunidade e Territórios. Nº.20-21.pp. 111-121 COSTA, A. F. (1999). Sociedade de bairro – dinâmicas sociais da identidade cultural. Oeiras: Celta Editora. COWELL, G. (2010). Theorising the public sphere in adult and community education. A discussion paper presented at the Laboratory for Educational Theory (LET) conference. The First International Conference of Educational Theory Proceedings , digital. GULIK, John (1989). The humanity of cities. An introduction to urban societies. Massachusetts: Bergin and Gavery Publishers, Inc. LONGWORTH, N. (2008). Learning cities, learning regions, lifelong learners implementers. In Sutherland and Crowther (eds.). Lifelong Learning: concept and contexts London and New York: Routeledge. pp. 182-195. LOPES, J.T. (2007/2008). Andante, andante: tempo para andar e descobrir o espaço público. Sociologia. 69-80. POIZAT, D. ( 2003). L’éducation non formelle. Paris: L’ Harmattan. ROGRES, Alan (2004). Non formal education: Flexible schooling or participatory education? Hong Kong: Kluver Academic Publishers. SAVAGE, M., G. Bagnall, et al. (2005). Globalization and belonging. Londo:, Sage. STAKE, R. (2007). A Arte de Investigação com Estudos de Caso. Lisboa. FCG. WATTS, D.J., DODDS, P.S., & NEWMAN, M.E.J. (2002). Identity and search in social networks. Science, 296, 1302–1305. WHITEHEAD, T. L. ( 2002). Community Based Interventions; Definitions and Types. The Cultural Ecology of Healh and Change (CEHC). Working Papers Series. http://cusag.umd.edu/documents/Working Papers/CBI.pdf.
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