Northampton Electronic Collection of Theses and Research

Reference, or advisory, groups involving disabled people: reflections from three contrasting research projects

Lewis, A., Parsons, S., Robertson, C., Feiler, A., Tarleton, B., Watson, D., Byers, R., Davies, J., Fergusson, A. and Marvin, C. (2008) Reference, or advisory, groups involving disabled people: reflections from three contrasting research projects. British Journal of Special Education. 35(2), pp. 78-84. 0952-3383.

Item Type: Article
Abstract: Increasingly in recent years, the involvement of disabled people as co-researchers has been regarded as "good practice." This has been informed by growing participatory and emancipatory research paradigms as well as user-focused policy imperatives. The benefits of these shifts apply to the research itself (improved definition, direction, applicability and impact), to non-disabled researchers (personal growth and enhanced understanding of the reflexive research process), to people with disabilities involved as researchers or collaborators (personal growth and enhanced opportunities), and (if externally funded) to the funder whose ways of operating are likely to be challenged profoundly. In this paper, Ann Lewis, Sarah Parsons and Christopher Robertson (based at the University of Birmingham), Anthony Feiler, Beth Tarleton and Debby Watson (based at the University of Bristol) and Richard Byers, Jill Davies, Ann Fergusson and Claire Marvin (based at the University of Cambridge) discuss the work of three independent research teams carrying out concurrent projects. The authors share their experiences of trying to take seriously the participation of disabled people in research. All three projects were informed, to a significant degree, by their respective reference groups of disabled people. The work of these groups in each of the three projects is outlined and then discussed in relation to five common themes: formal contracts with members of reference groups; considerations concerning drawing on an established reference group; planning for reference group involvement; style of reference group involvement; and building on good practice.
Uncontrolled Keywords: reference group, advisory group, disabilities, participatory, emancipatory, partnership, research, empowerment, ethics
Subjects: H Social Sciences > H Social Sciences (General) > H62 Study and teaching. Research
H Social Sciences > HV Social pathology. Social and public welfare. Criminology > HV1551 People with disabilities
L Education > LC Special aspects of Education > LC3950 Exceptional children and youth. Special education > LC4001 Children and youth with disabilities. Learning disabled children and youth
Creators: Lewis, Ann, Parsons, Sarah, Robertson, Christopher, Feiler, Anthony, Tarleton, Beth, Watson, Debby, Byers, Richard, Davies, Jill, Fergusson, Ann and Marvin, Claire
Projects: What About Us?
Publisher: Blackwell Publishing
Faculties, Divisions and Institutes: University Faculties, Divisions and Research Centres - OLD > Research Centre > Centre for Special Needs Education and Research
University Faculties, Divisions and Research Centres - OLD > Faculty of Education & Humanities
University Faculties, Divisions and Research Centres - OLD > Faculty of Education & Humanities > Special Education Needs and Inclusion
University Faculties, Divisions and Research Centres - OLD > Research Centre > Centre for Sustainable Business Practices
Faculties > Faculty of Education & Humanities > Special Education Needs and Inclusion
Date: June 2008
Date Type: Publication
Page Range: pp. 78-84
Journal or Publication Title: British Journal of Special Education
Volume: 35
Number: 2
Language: English
DOI: https://doi.org/10.1111/j.1467-8578.2008.00376.x
ISSN: 0952-3383
Status: Published / Disseminated
Refereed: Yes
URI: http://nectar.northampton.ac.uk/id/eprint/5931

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