Join the Conversation!
Share your research with Action Learning: Research and Practice
Proposal Deadline: 31 October 2019
Special Issue Call for Papers
Cases and Accounts of Practice
The aim of this Special Issue is to promote ideas and examples of action learning in the service of social action. This is an invitation to join us and to become part of an effort at social change.
This Special Issue originates in a futures workshop at a conference in April 2018, when we found ourselves asking what action learning can do to deal with some of the pressing problems of our time. The background to the theme of the Special Issue includes the wicked problems of climate change, environmental degradation and the inequalities of wealth and power exacerbated by globalisation. In the Global South, conflicts, terrorism and climatic changes have forced millions of people from their homes to migrate in search of food and safety. In the Global North, neo-liberal economic and social policies have pursued agendas of deregulation, privatisation and the shrinking of the state contributing to increases in homelessness, poverty and mental illness.
Amidst these developments are beacons of light; of people taking back control in local regeneration schemes, community trusts financing their own energy and housing projects, social entrepreneurs setting up co-working spaces and inventing new ways of doing business. As some turn inwards towards territorial protection and nationalism, a more hopeful view of globalisation sees new opportunities for connectivity, communication and collaboration. Younger people are in the forefront of political and ecological movements which are setting out to learn new ways of inhabiting the earth.
Revans devised action learning to help people in challenging situations. As a ready means of engaging people in change, action learning has sometimes been coopted in the service of corporate interests but this Special Issue seeks to celebrate the empowerment of those who want to change their own worlds from the inside and from the bottom. The following themes are indicative but not exhaustive of the many possibilities where action learning is playing a part in:
- Work on the wicked problems of society - engaging with social problems such as poverty, homelessness, crime, climate change and so on, where there are no right answers but many prospects for collaboration
- Efforts at political change and political action
- Environmental activism
- Empowering people to take charge of their health, educational and social care needs
- Cases of voluntary organizations, Churches, NGOs, Charities etc. tackling social issues
- Examples of social entrepreneurialism, social business, co-operatives, local enterprise
- Regeneration work in cities, communities and neighbourhoods
- Innovations in businesses to promote regeneration including in finance as in making “money work for positive, social, environmental and cultural change” (Triodos Bank)
- Historical links to Revans work eg “helping each other to help the helpless” (mental health)
If you would like to be part of this Special Issue, please send Outline Proposals of 200 – 300 words for a paper, case or account of practice to the co-editors by 30th April 2019.
Final papers to be submitted by 31st October 2019.