This paradigm is totally opposite to positivist paradigm and constructivism. Whereas structural models, which are also popular with organizational theorists, provide for a more static view of organizational life. As noted previously, both projects involved respondents with differing levels of knowledge, experience and control over the process being studied. Charles Sanders was the originator behind the pragmatic paradigm while William James was his colleague he defended the idea and promoted it later. The knowledge gained can be analyzed to know what part of the knowledge can be applied to another similar circumstance in another settings. While this approach is compatible with qualitative-dominant interpretivist understandings of socially constructed reality, the emphasis is on interrogating the value and meaning of research data through examination of its practical consequences (Morgan, 2014b). The pragmatic paradigm is useful for guiding research design, especially when a combination of different approaches is philosophically inconsistent. Qualitative research is often associated with interpretivism, but alternatives do exist. James (2010) built on Peirce’s work by emphasizing the personal and subjective aspects of meaning. For instance, early in the data collection process in Project example 2, it became obvious that the link between performance measurement and the decision-making process had not been reflected upon by implementation staff. This has reverberations for the relevance and utility of our research findings, not only for NGOs but also for the wider organizational research discourse. In the 20th century the pragmatic paradigm gave birth to neopragmatism. The emergence and development of mixed-method methodology changed the way social science research has been conducted in the past. In addition, part of both projects’ objectives is to broadcast the work of smaller NGOs to the development sector. research: quantitative, qualitative and mixed methods. A second principle which serves to strengthen the pragmatist inquiry process is the opportunity to explore the interconnectedness of experience, knowing and acting in the research process within respondent organizations. This epistemological stance provides scope for the pluralist understanding of multiple truths accepted by interpretivist theoretical frameworks heavily utilized in qualitative research. Hence, ambiguities in the data such as contradictions between management and operational staff, or between the formal documentation and informal organizational practices, were easier to approach. Pragmatism holds that the value and meaning of opinions and ‘facts’ captured in research data are assessed through examination of their practical consequences; this gives them a ‘warranted assertibility’ (Dewey, 1938). Thus, adopting an authentic and coherent pragmatist stance requires careful study and understanding of the underlying principles of this approach. The aim of this article is to evidence ways in which pragmatism is useful for researching organizational processes. It has enabled us to frame organizational processes as social practices and arrive at a dynamic and multi-faceted understanding of practice. She holds a Bachelor’s, Master’s, and PhD degree in sociology and development studies. 9; 2019 ISSN 1913-9004 E-ISSN 1913-9012 Published by Canadian Center of Science and Education 1 Pragmatism as a Supportive Paradigm for the Mixed Research Approach: Conceptualizing the Ontological, Epistemological, and Axiological Stances of Pragmatism Heba Maarouf1 For Project example 1, the analysis plan focused on the principle of actionable knowledge by analysing NGOs’ organizational values against widely accepted programme evaluation standards to highlight practices respondents found useful, purposeful and meaningful, as well as identifying practices that could be strengthened. In recent years pragmatism has been worked by several researchers in North America, South America, and in Central Europe. In addition, pragmatism guided our sampling strategies by helping us identify information rich respondents most likely to provide useful practice-based knowledge, as well as ensuring the sampling process uncovered a range of perspectives. Qualitative research has been widely accepted in all disciplines for academic as well as non-academic reasons. The other significant progress that pragmatism made is the possibility of inter-subjectivity in social science research. KEYWORDS: Participatory Action Research, Pragmatism, Qualitative Research, Community Socially engaged research has the promise of rejuvenating the social sciences (Brydon-Miller et al., 2011, Flyvbjerg, 2004, Levin & Greenwood, 2011, Mertens, 2007). Morgan (2014a) explains this as, ‘In contrast to philosophies that emphasize the nature of reality, pragmatists emphasize the nature of experience’ (p. 27). Our research projects were driven by intentions to make valuable contributions to NGOs. Understanding this interconnectedness was enriched in Project example 1 through the cultivation of ongoing relationships with respondents. The pragmatism paradigm follows both positivism and interpretivism to seek the answers to the problems. Pragmatism is a paradigm that includes ideas, methods, approaches, principals, or a mix of these to explain a solution to a research problem. Tashakkori and Teddlie (1998) propose that there are three approaches to research quantitative, qualitative and mixed methods. Similarly, the gurus of qualitative research, Denzin and Lincoln (2000), define paradigms as human constructions, which deal with first principles or ultimates indicating where the researcher is coming from so as to construct meaning embedded in data. In really simple terms, the three most common paradigms are explained below (and are shown in this epistemology diagram too, taken from here ): Positivists believe that there is a single reality, which can be measured and known, and therefore they are more likely to use quantitative methods to measure and this reality. By analysing the data across the sample NGOs, it was found that many of the established and documented practices were rarely mentioned in the context of discussions on usefulness. Please check you selected the correct society from the list and entered the user name and password you use to log in to your society website. This chapter provides an overview of pragmatism as a paradigm for research in the social sciences. What is Research: Research Characteristics, What is Research: Definitions and Meanings, Writing a Research Essay: Steps and Concepts, Purposeful Sampling in Qualitative Research, Ethical Issues in Participant Observation, https://plato.stanford.edu/entries/pragmatism/, http://eprints.whiterose.ac.uk/115066/3/pragmatism-ijbraf-paper.pdf, https://research-methodology.net/research-philosophy/pragmatism-research-philosophy/, Causes and Solutions of Juvenile Delinquency, What are the qualities of a good research topic, How to Preserve Food using Natural Food Preservatives. It does not totally rely on interpretivist approach not on the positivist approach. In addition, we argue that pragmatism is of instrumental value to research on organizational processes as viewing people’s ideas and beliefs as tools for problem solving and acting in new ways involve research subjects as active participants rather than as passive descriptors of the world as it exists. This paradigm is associated with action, intervention and constructive knowledge. While recognizing that our research is highly contextually bound, both projects have scope to share useful findings. The article focuses on three core methodological principles that underlie a pragmatic approach to inquiry: (1) an emphasis on actionable knowledge, (2) recognition of the interconnectedness between experience, knowing and acting and (3) inquiry as an experiential process. Research paradigms that relate to this model of practice would integrate qualitative and quantitative types of knowledge and inquiry, while maintaining a prioritized focus on patient outcomes. Abduction allows researchers to move from observations to theories, by reasoning at an intermediate level (Friedrichs and Kratochwil, 2009). In Project example 1, pragmatism effected sequencing by allowing a level of flexibility unusual in many other frameworks. Although pragmatist researchers are sometimes criticized for over emphasizing the practical, in fact, pragmatism enables researchers to overcome the dichotomy between theory and action and give voice to those impacted by organizational process (McKenna et al., 2011). Table 1 below provides a brief overview of the two doctoral projects. I have read and accept the terms and conditions, View permissions information for this article. The paradigm wars between these approaches often encouraged the application of rigid methodological frameworks and the temptation of creating ‘one … pragmatic approach to research design as well as the importance of creating coherence between the research question, the research paradigm, the research method and its use, encouraging research practitioners to adopt a more systematic, deliberate and philosophically-based approach to research design. Pragmatists believe that there cannot be a single reality but multiple realities. This is strengthened through presentation and analysis of three methodological principles of pragmatism, used as a framework to detail the project examples. Five Common Paradigms . pragmatism that do not engage in social action or research. The final methodological principle distilled from the literature on pragmatism is informed by the Deweyan principle of inquiry, which links beliefs and action through a process of decision-making (Morgan, 2014b). Pragmatic inquiry recognizes that individuals within social settings (including organizations) can experience action and change differently, and this encourages them to be flexible in their investigative techniques (Onwuegbuzie and Leech, 2005). The paradigm wars between these approaches often encouraged the application of rigid methodological frameworks and the temptation of creating ‘one size fits all’ epistemological solutions. The rise of pragmatic paradigm occurred side-by-side with the rise of the mixed-methods approach. Participatory approaches in qualitative research are on the rise. As the research progressed, this principle helped us determine our research questions and methods. Copyright © 2010 ResarchArticles.com | All rights reserved. Sign in here to access free tools such as favourites and alerts, or to access personal subscriptions, If you have access to journal content via a university, library or employer, sign in here, Research off-campus without worrying about access issues. The pragmatic paradigm originated in the United States in the late 19th century. display: none !important; With Dewey (2008 [1922]), pragmatism advanced beyond the individual, psychological realm towards an emphasis on individual as well as shared human experience. Contrary to the critique of pragmatism discussed earlier, we find that the emphasis on ‘what works’ actually helps validate research questions and focus inquiry processes at the onset according to how and what respondents identify as working or not working. This was undertaken through the circulation of plain language questions prior to interviews in Project example 2 and by allowing respondents in both project examples to feedback and refine views before, during and after interviews. Paradigm #4 Pragmatism • “To a pragmatist, the mandate of science is not to find truth or reality, the existence of which are perpetually in dispute, but to facilitate human problem- solving” (Powell, 2001, p. 884). This iterative prioritization process was important for respondents but also important for enhancing the relevance and potential transferability of the research findings, an important aspect of pragmatism (Kelly, 2019c; Morgan, 2007). Pragmatism is a school of thought that believes the function of thought is tool for prediction, action, and problem solving and not to describe, represent, or mirror reality. Which research paradigm does my research belong to? Thus, using pragmatism, researchers working in organizational settings can move beyond objectivist conceptualizations, which have dominated research in the organizational sciences, to exploring and understanding the connections between knowledge and action in context. 2 This article explicates pragmatism as a relevant and useful paradigm for qualitative research on organizational processes. Keeping respondents in a communication loop enabled respondents to feel invested in the research and send impromptu updates of their evaluation journeys. Pragmatism’s inherent focus on experience and action helped refine the research problems under investigation. In fact, as noted above, the classical pragmatism movement originated to focus inquiry on issues of human significance rather than on metaphysical debates about the nature of truth and reality (Patton, 2005). Pragmatism accepts a flexible approach to solving research problems. 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