Online action research in the time of Covid

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Between 2020 and 2021 severe restrictions were placed upon travel and movement within the UK because of the Covid-19 pandemic. New rules governing the composition of meetings meant that researchers who had planned to employ Action Research had to rethink their strategies. The planned field research, a fundamental part of this inquiry, had to be reassessed to take into account the restrictions on individual and group meetings. These changes affected how the researchers could set about the inquiry and led to the exploration of technology-based communication systems as the means of undertaking the field research. In this paper we recount the technologies that were considered prior to the field study, and the experiences and lessons learnt from a pilot study in which these technologies were used with a soft method of inquiry. This was a new experience for all concerned and a thorough thought process had to be put in place, but one that provided valuable guidance on how to undertake a field study with a degree of confidence where face-to-face contact is not possible.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)69-79
Number of pages11
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 1 Sept 2021


  • action research
  • AIM
  • soft systems
  • information and communications technology
  • Coivd-19 resrtrictions
  • collaborative software


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