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Participatory action research (PAR) with children and youth: An integrative review of methodology and PAR outcomes for participants, organizations, and communities

Daria P. Shamrova and Cristy E. Cummings

Children and Youth Services Review, 2017, vol. 81, issue C, 400-412

Abstract: Due to an increasing emphasis on children's rights, children's participation in studies about social issues has become a trend. The research community has been liberally utilizing the concept of participatory action research (PAR). Thus, oversimplification of children's involvement and misinterpretation of their voices has become a concern for many scholars. This review is an attempt to support the critical conversation about PAR, especially in regard to (1) its methodological features, as well as (2) outcomes of genuine children's participation in PAR for children and youth themselves, social service organizations, and communities. Forty-five articles were selected and coded for analysis in accordance with integrative review methodology. PAR with children and youth showed evidence of positive outcomes for children, organizations, and communities. However, PAR with children and youth still faces the challenges of involving very young participants, providing meaningful participation opportunities and addressing power differences between children and adults in diverse cultural contexts. Discussion of methodological challenges and review of critical outcomes of the PAR approach is provided.

Keywords: Participatory action research; Integrative review; Children; Youth (search for similar items in EconPapers)
Date: 2017
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