Research is “The systematic investigation into and study of materials and sources in order to establish facts and reach new conclusions” (Oxford University Press 2012).
This area of the website presents research of three different types: preparatory research into the geographical communities and topics to be investigated by the study trips. This was undertaken by the organisers of the study trips from the host countries, and also by the participants planning to take part in the trips; action research in the form of reflective observations undertaken by participants during the study trips; evaluations of the study trips by participants and organisers.
Action research generates knowledge, focuses on a specific problem or situation, and brings about change. As Bell points out, an important feature of action research is that the job is not finished when the project ends and she asserts that “the problem-solving nature of action research makes this approach attractive to practitioner-researchers” (1999:9). The generic goal of most evaluations is to provide “useful feedback” to audiences including organisers and funders and is often seen as “useful” if it aids in decision-making. The evaluation of each study trip was used to inform subsequent trips and the final project report.
Bell, J. (1999). Doing your research project. Buckingham: Open University Press.
Oxford University Press (2012) Research http://oxforddictionaries.com/definition/english/research [19-11-12]
Trochim William M.K. (2006) Introduction to evaluation http://www.socialresearchmethods.net/kb/intreval.php [19-11-12]