Saturday, January 14, 2023: 4:00 PM-5:30 PM
Valley of the Sun E, 2nd Level (Sheraton Phoenix Downtown)
Cluster: Research Design and Measurement
Dominique Mikell Montgomery, MSW, University of California, Los Angeles
Melanie Sonsteng-Person, PhD, University of California, Los Angeles, Sid Jordan, JD, University of California, Los Angeles and Victoria Copeland, University of California, Los Angeles
Participatory action research (PAR) is an approach to research that builds power through collective knowledge-building practices to address complex social problems and advance transformative social change goals. We are a cohort of doctoral student social welfare scholars with over a decade of collective experience utilizing various PAR methods in our scholarship among multiple communities. This roundtable is intended to create a space to share and reflect on PAR data analysis strategies and, in particular, examine the connection between analytical decision making and centering social change for racial equity and social justice. The organizers believe that if social work researchers aim to truly center racial equity and social justice, it is essential that we employ research methods and analysis strategies that align with these larger goals. The roundtable builds on the claim within the SSWR 27th Annual Conference Call for Papers that "social work science is a major driver of solution-oriented policy and practice" by highlighting the tensions and possibilities for social change research within social work. As the history of social work is rooted in systems of white supremacy, social welfare research has perpetuated the marginalization and exploitation of many communities. In direct response to this, PAR, as an inclusive approach to research, rebukes harmful practices and re-imagines who research is for and what research can be. By participating in PAR projects, social work researchers can support communities to utilize research to pursue racial and social justice in a manner that aligns with those justice goals; however, reaching that ideal is not a given. As social work researchers, we must critically examine our role in each part of the PAR research process, and in particular data analysis, and how it aligns with the justice principles our research aims to address. As there is limited guidance on how to conduct participatory data analysis, this roundtable will engage social work scholars by discussing the following questions about implementing participatory data analysis strategies: 1. What methods of participatory data analysis have you seen, heard, or used? 2. How do these participatory data analysis strategies align with the overarching goal of PAR to advance social and racial justice? 3. What have been our experiences, including opportunities and barriers, when implementing participatory data analysis strategies? What can be learned from those experiences? 4. What tools are available to help us assess whether our data analysis strategies support our collective's larger vision for eliminating social inequities? Our panelists will begin the roundtable by sharing their unique experiences using participatory data analysis strategies. Specifically, they will draw on research conducted in the context of health and healing, wellness as resistance, transformative justice, gender justice, and child welfare technology and surveillance. Next, all participants will critically discuss their own experiences using participatory data analysis strategies. Lastly, we will collectively create a set of guiding questions that can be used in the future to reflect upon the social and racial justice ramifications of our data analysis strategies.
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