Revue Internationale de Psychosociologie et de Gestion des Comportements Organisationnels (RIPCO)
The fifth RIPCO research day, focused on "well-being/malaise at work," brought together 93 participants and featured 35 presentations from 63 international contributors at the ICN campus in Paris-La Défense on June 6, 2024, and the editorial committee is considering transforming this annual event into a two-day academic congress. SUBMIT
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Volume VII • Issue 16-17 • 2001 (Already published)
(Regular issue)
Action research: international perspectives
Issue content
Title :  Introduction
Author(s) :  André, Lévy
Pages :  5 - 8
DOI :  10.3917/rips.016.0005
Type :  Introduction
URL Cairn:
Title :  Thoughts about the past of action research and its relevance today
Author(s) :  Jean, Dubost
Abstract :  Despite its faults, the notion of action research, still alive today, is useful because it acts to group together critical positions with regard to the dominant models of scientificity in the sciences of man. From this point of view the article takes up the hypotheses that Fred H. Blum proposed as early as the 1950s (in particular that action research was born of the dissent over the separation of research and action instituted in the 19th century). The relevance of action research, for example in agronomy, contributes to supporting these hypotheses, which are not only concerned with stakes of method or epistemology but ethical and political stakes. Noting the anteriority of the phenomena that the expression “action research” designates over the invention of this notion, an attempt is made at reflecting on the various ways of dating their origins.
Keywords:  past, action research, research, relevance, Fred H. Blum,
Pages :  9 - 18
DOI :  10.3917/rips.016.0009
Type :  Research paper
URL Cairn:
Title :  Action research. The relationship between researchers and the researched
Author(s) :  Harry, Coenen
Abstract :  As an emancipatory methodology aimed to focus social scientific theorising on actual social problems and examine new directions and guidelines for emancipation and empowerment, action research is based on a joint learning process of researchers and researched. A solid relationship based on mutual trust between both parties is a precondition for good quality research, and provides useful prospects for the social practices being studied. In this article the author explicitly focuses on the relationship between researcher and researched in action research. The first part provides a historical overview, in which Freire rather than Lewin is considered to be the most important founder of participatory and emancipatory action research. The author then goes on to discuss mutual adequacy, explicitness and reflexivity as the principles for building mutual trust between researcher and researched. The article concludes by outlining some ways in which a more equal relationship between researcher and researched can be developed in the course of a particular research.
Keywords:  action research, research, relationship,
Pages :  19 - 32
DOI :  10.3917/rips.016.0019
Type :  Research paper
URL Cairn:
Title :  From action research to clinical psychosocial intervention
Author(s) :  Florence, Giust-Desprairies
Abstract :  The author disengages herself from a Lewinian perspective that is too often understood as an action of voluntary change where changes would be defined as the processing of problems of adaptation (regulation being understood as a search for balance). The author’s reticence comes from what, in this approach, induces a representation of the consultant’s share over the degree and the registers of satisfaction that the group should reach. The clinical approach can be distinguished from the approach of action research in so far as the researcher is not centred on the action but on the demand as a demand for meaning which defines questioning about a relationship. It is a particular way of questioning the doing-together but also the being-together on the level of subjective and intersubjective processes, organisational, instititional and social logics and in the arrangement of these processes and these logics. The research object is defined in the gap between researched and researchers, understood not as critical distance, but as what permits the relation without which the analysis of a certain type of process could not take place.
Keywords:  action research , clinical psychosocial intervention, Lewinian, intervention
Pages :  33 - 46
DOI :  10.3917/rips.016.0033
Type :  Research paper
URL Cairn:
Title :  Towards a differentiated concept of reciprocal adequacy
Author(s) :  Coyan, Tromp
Abstract :  As a means to validate the jointly produced knowledge of researchers and researched, the principle of reciprocal adequacy plays an important role within the model of exemplarian action research. Since Habermas’s discourse theory provides a normative base to ground the reciprocal relationship between researchers and researched, in this article, the author tries to incorporate Habermas’s ideas into the model of exemplarian action research. This means, though, that his dichotomic view on ‘lifeworld’ and ‘system’ has to be brought in line with the dual outlook presented in Giddens’s structuration theory – which is one of the main pillars of the model of exemplarian action research. For it is only when human action and social structures are perceived in their recurrent relation that we can get a clear view on what the practice of (a critical) social science involves: taking both meanings, norms and power aspects into consideration in its search for knowledge and its efforts to enhance empowerment. This also means that reciprocal adequacy cannot be measured by the criterion of truth alone, but will also have to imply criteria of justice and authenticity. This is a prerequisite to be able to develop a concept of rationality that is not limited to the cognitive-instrumental aspect only, but also incorporates normative and expressive elements of life.
Keywords:  differentiated concept, reciprocal adequacy, Giddens’s structuration theory, Giddens
Pages :  47 - 60
DOI :  10.3917/rips.016.0047
Type :  Research paper
URL Cairn:
Title :  Clinical approach to social practices and action research
Author(s) :  André, Sirota
Abstract :  Both science and social practice, psychosociology does not dissociate the action and the clinical aspect of the conditions of production of knowledge in which it participates. The project of knowledge which concerns it does not aim to fabricate reified objects that can be manipulated from the outside. Its knowledge is a knowledge of self, others, relationships, collective functioning and processes. It is built up by the work of analysis in common of situations in order to understand and go beyond the practical, psychological, organisational and theoretical difficulties. The paradigm of validation of its pronouncements is that of the clinical proving of hypotheses in a situation, by giving several people a chance to speak.
Keywords:  clinical approach,social practices,action research, psychosociology
Pages :  61 - 78
DOI :  10.3917/rips.016.0061
Type :  Research paper
URL Cairn:
Title :  Exemplarian action research, empowerment and reciprocal adequation. Developing a networking method for refugees
Author(s) :  Ben, Boog ; Cootje, Logger
Abstract :  This article goes into an exemplarian action research project, in which a coaching method was developed, which enables refugees to build up and co-ordinate a social support network in the Netherlands. This method is called the “tree model”. Firstly, the research problem, the situation of refugees, and the design according to the methodology of exemplarian action research will be described. Subsequently, the core process of this action research: reciprocal adequation and empowerment based on reciprocal trust will be dealt with. In this section the focus will be on the question what reciprocal adequation etc. meant in this practice-oriented research. Thirdly, the authors will come up with the results of the research process, the outcomes of the different cooperative activities during the research process on which the exemplar, the tree model, was built and tested. The article ends with some concluding remarks on questions and answers of theory and practice.
Keywords:  action research, empowerment, reciprocal adequation,networking method, refugees
Pages :  79 - 96
DOI :  10.3917/rips.016.0079
Type :  Research paper
URL Cairn:
Title :  Reciprocal HRM as an Exemplarian Principle of Development
Author(s) :  Ben, Valkenburg ; Frans, Coenen ; Marianne, Coenen-Hanegraaf
Abstract :  Many discussions on Human Resource Management centre on the relationship between individual and organization. It is easy to say this relationship should be reciprocal and that, in this reciprocal relationship, both individual and organization should learn and develop. Practical experience makes clear, though, that this is easy to say, but hard to do. In this article we try to contribute to this discussion, centring around a model for the implementation of changes in organizations. In the first part of the article we will discuss the theoretical basis for the model, that is an individual demand oriented approach. We will also elaborate on the practical context in which the model has been developed. In the second part we will present the model, in which individual development, organizational development and learning, form an integrated process.
Keywords:  Reciprocal HRM, HRM, principle of development, development
Pages :  97 - 120
DOI :  10.3917/rips.016.0097
Type :  Research paper
URL Cairn:
Title :  Prevention of infections in hospital: action research at the University Hospital in Bujumbura (Burundi)
Author(s) :  Dominique, Lhuilier ; Jean, Ndoricimpa ; Venant, Hatungimana
Abstract :  This action research, carried out at the University Hospital in Bujumbura (Burundi), was requested because of a local demand for change in view of the importance of the health risks at the hospital, both for the health professionals and for the patients, and an inventory of the limits of knowledge and methodologies as they were presented in the research studies that had already been carried out. The problems of this action research are to be found in the framework of an approach to the workings of institutions and professions, the theme of transmissible diseases being conceived as revealing this working in a context marked by the development of the AIDS epidemic and a climate of civil war. The Franco-Burundi multidisciplinary team contributed, with the group of those researched at the hospital, to the setting up of technical and organisational arrangements in the service of prevention. They carried out an analysis of the interdependence between representations of risks and professional practices, in their double relationship of determination and consequence.
Keywords:  prevention of infections, infections, prevention, hospital, action research, University Hospital, Bujumbura, Burundi
Pages :  121 - 138
DOI :  10.3917/rips.016.0121
Type :  Research paper
URL Cairn:
Title :  An experience of action research Social reinsertion of psychiatric patients in China
Author(s) :  Robert, Sévigny
Abstract :  After recalling the objective of the research that he carried out on the social reinsertion of psychiatric patients from a big psychiatric hospital in Beijing and outlining the personal history of his contact with China, the author deals with some of the stakes connected with the process of action research. He particularly highlights the impact of the cultural difference between himself and the other Chinese participants in this research. In his opinion, action research implies, however, taking steps that transcend this intercultural difference. He illustrates his point of view by exploring certain aspects of the Chinese socio-political context and certain issues of a methodological and theoretical order.
Keywords:  experience, action research, social reinsertion, psychiatric patients, China
Pages :  139 - 157
DOI :  10.3917/rips.016.0139
Type :  Research paper
URL Cairn:
Title :  Empowerment of clients with severe mental illness as a challenge
Author(s) :  Louis, Polstra
Abstract :  Severe mentally ill clients, especially the mentally ill clients with an addiction, are known as one of the most difficult groups to help. In this article two action research projects are described. Both projects had the aim of delivering customized care and improve the co-ordination between the involved caregivers. The action researcher worked closely together with the therapists in a circular process of action, reflection and change. The development method of case management proved to be successful and adequate to solve the action problem (adequacy is one of two criteria for the quality of an action research). The therapists became key figures in the reformation of the mental health system in the city of Groningen. The action research projects contributed to their empowerment, the second quality criterion of action research. The clients profit individually from the proceeds of the reforms. The projects did not succeed in an empowerment process of the clients. The inability to function in a group hinders such a process.
Keywords:  empowerment, clients, severe mental illness, challenge , mental illness, disorder
Pages :  159 - 176
DOI :  10.3917/rips.016.0159
Type :  Research paper
URL Cairn:
Title :  A contribution of psychosociology to the democratic construction of public security
Author(s) :  Joëlle, Bordet
Abstract :  This article was written with reference to the presentation of the workshop on security at Grande-synthe and the reflection to which it gave rise at the CIRFIP symposium on action research. First of all, we describe the process of elaboration involving situations of insecurity, combining elected officers, professionals and the inhabitants; this collective work aims at a better understanding of the situations experienced concerning insecurity and at creating conditions for reassuring all the inhabitants. The political inclusion of this workshop within the municipality constitutes a necessity for its development. Secondly, we analyse, according to this experience, how psychosociology can help to make public intervention in the area of security an element of construction of local democracy and why setting up a collective space connecting thinking, understanding and action contributes to this.
Keywords:  psychosociology, democratic construction, democratic, public, public security, safety
Pages :  177 - 190
DOI :  10.3917/rips.016.0177
Type :  Research paper
URL Cairn:
Title :  Some lessons from a “mirror operation” at MSF
Author(s) :  Christian, Michelot ; Oscar, Ortsman
Abstract :  Médecins Sans Frontières (MSF) is an association of humanitarian medical care which leads missions in some 50 countries. The headquarters are in Paris. About 150 employees work there. A first action-research, in 1988, was the point of departure of the formalization of a method of intervention, the “Mirror intervention” (Ortsman, 1994). A second intervention, in 1999, took place in 3 departments of the headquarters. Detailed presentation of this 1999 intervention and the comparison of the success of the Mirror operation in two of these departments, with the difficulties met in the third one allows us to: understand better the nature of the problems of organization of work in a phase of expansion, and think about and take into account the psychic as well as the institutional dimensions during an action-research.
Keywords:  operation, DWB, Doctors Without Borders
Pages :  191 - 205
DOI :  10.3917/rips.016.0191
Type :  Research paper
URL Cairn:
Title :  Self-informing organizational change. A participatory method of data collection, analysis and action planning
Author(s) :  Jane B., Maestro-Scherer ; Robert E., Rich
Abstract :  This article describes a participatory method that utilizes the internal resources of organizations along with the expertise of external collaborators to systematically study and address issues of concern. It combines the “common sense” of the organization with a “scientific” approach in the development of a body of systematic knowledge representative of the organization as a whole (as opposed to anecdotal or non-holistic) that is then used to develop action strategies. The method features a clear separation of roles between external actors (consultants) and internal actors (members of the organization) – fundamental in assuring that valid information, consistent with the values and interests of the organization, is generated and applied. The role differentiation allocates the process responsibility to consultants while a “diagonal slice” of organizational members manage the interpretation and use of content. As a collateral benefit, the nature of the method creates a natural diffusion effect which increases the engagement of the whole organization, enhancing the acceptance and likelihood of change.
Keywords:  Self-informing organizational change, participatory method, data collection, analysis, action planning
Pages :  207 - 221
DOI :  10.3917/rips.016.0207
Type :  Research paper
URL Cairn:
Title :  Comparative sociology and action research
Author(s) :  Jean-Luc, Prades
Abstract :  Action research is an intervention: is the opposite always true? To answer that question requires asking questions about the terms it contains, i.e. defining what action research is and recognising the plurality of the existing forms of intervention. Using descriptions of interventions already carried out, comparative sociology ought to make it possible better to place, in their relation to action research, the four “schools” retained: the organisational approach (Friedberg), sociological intervention (Dubet), intervention in clinical sociology (Enriquez) and sociopsychoanalytic intervention (Mendel).
Keywords:  comparative sociology, and action research
Pages :  223 - 233
DOI :  10.3917/rips.016.0223
Type :  Research paper
URL Cairn:
Title :  Premises and outcomes of action research
Author(s) :  Franca, Manoukian
Abstract :  The congenital ambiguity of action research is easier to perceive, bear, manage if we consider the conditions that lead us to undertake action research and the outcomes which are reached. A real start becomes possible if situations are condensed in which people and groups, for different reasons and with different histories can be disposed to come into contact with each other more directly and with processes of becoming re-acquainted with problems, neither guaranteed, nor guided by a ready made knowledge. Researchers are engaged in the same way as the other actors in deconstructing and constructing possible knowledge. As for outcomes, what seems more important is not obtaining the formulated objectives and carrying out the desired changes, but rather carrying out social action which produces knowledge about the modes of knowledge of what is social in those who live in the social itself. That constitutes unexpected effects, discoveries that have a social impact which must not be underestimated, in particular in relation to the weighty questions that are raised about possible forms of integration in our post-modern society.
Keywords:  Premises, outcomes, action research
Pages :  235 - 249
DOI :  10.3917/rips.016.0235
Type :  Research paper
URL Cairn:
Title :  The role of participatory action research in the training and practice of community psychologists in post-apartheid South Africa
Author(s) :  Vijé, Franchi
Abstract :  Drawing on a primary prevention program carried out in a historically “coloured” township to the west of Johannesburg, the present article explores the role of participatory action research in the training and practice of community psychologists in post-apartheid South Africa. In light of its stated objectives to collectively explore social reality so as to participate in its transformation, participatory action research offers a reflexive-action model for relevant psychological practice. It addresses the increasing need to intervene at the level of the community in areas ravaged by the inequalities and trauma that bear testimony to centuries of institutionalised violence and “racial” oppression in South Africa, and the stumbling blocks encountered when working interculturally, across the divide of ‘racialised’ histories and segregated subjectivities.
Keywords:  participatory action research, training, practice , community psychologists, psychologist, post-apartheid, South Africa
Pages :  251 - 271
DOI :  10.3917/rips.016.0251
Type :  Research paper
URL Cairn:
Title :  Analysis of practices of intervention, restitution and validity An experience of research-training with street workers
Author(s) :  Michèle, Vatz-Laaroussi ; Roch, Hurtubise
Abstract :  Restitution and validity are at the heart of action research. We present a research-training which combines a pedagogical approach and a research process. Our analysis of the practices of street workers necessitated the setting up of an infinitely variable system of restitution which implies a continuous and cumulative exchange between researchers and contributors. The contextualised reception, the potential appropriations and the mechanisms of translation that are inherent to this system are discussed. Moreover, to overcome the impasse between scientific conceptual validity and empirical validation by the researched, we propose reflection which rests on three main lines: knowledge, recognition and finally reflexive identification. In this context, the ethical dimensions of research raise new stakes.
Keywords:  practices, intervention, restitution, validity, experience, research-training, street workers
Pages :  273 - 287
DOI :  10.3917/rips.016.0273
Type :  Research paper
URL Cairn:
Title :  Research and sociological intervention in restructuring urban layout in big estates. Generative programming
Author(s) :  Michel, Bonetti
Abstract :  This paper explains the conceptual frame-work underpinning an action-research methodology aiming at restructuring the urban lay out and transforming the management system of social housing estates. This kind of action-research has been implemented on several estates, in Paris, Nantes or Amiens. This conceptual framework considers that social housing dynamics are the outcome of the relationship between the social and cultural profile of the inhabitants, the urban lay out organisation and the management system running these estates. The paper explains the differences between this kind of action-research and other kinds of methodologies, such as sociotechnical approaches or interactionist psychosociological approaches.
Keywords:  research, sociological intervention, restructuring urban layout, urban, estates. generative programming
Pages :  289 - 305
DOI :  10.3917/rips.016.0289
Type :  Research paper
URL Cairn:
Title :  The session as interaction: flows of transfer and non verbal communication
Author(s) :  Klimis, Navridis
Abstract :  Classic clinical psychoanalysis focuses on the level of verbal communication between the analysed and the analyst, and considers that this is the field par excellence where transfer and countertransfer take place. In this article, we emphasise the importance of the pragmatic dimension and non verbal communication in the therapeutic situation, especially in the area of the treatment of pre-oedipian type pathologies and in particular in the specific context of face-to-face psychoanalytical psychotherapy.
Keywords:  psychoanalysis, interaction: flows of transfer, communication, non verbal communication
Pages :  307 - 316
DOI :  10.3917/rips.016.0307
Type :  Studies
URL Cairn:
Title :  Psychodynamics of expatriation: nostalgia as adaptation syndrome
Author(s) :  Philippe, Robert-Demontrond
Abstract :  Putting into practice the new managerial demands of international mobility can generate important psycho-pathological problems which: i) cannot be warded off by the classical tools of social survey, and ii) imply studying the development of the nostalgia syndrome. Once this syndrome has been precisely defined, the genealogy and the semantic evolutions of the concept of nostalgia can be described, as I did in this study. In particular, it is shown that nostalgia is now often understood as an ambiguous affect, drawn as “bittersweet”. I think that it should be more exactly described as a two-component affect which can be both positive and negative, but also positive or negative – i.e., finally, normal or pathological. In this study, nostalgia’s various personal and environmental factors are analysed. From there, the terms and conditions to prevent nostalgia are examined, as a signal to companies that there is a resistance to expatriation.
Keywords:  psychodynamics, expatriation, nostalgia, adaptation, syndrome
Pages :  317 - 338
DOI :  10.3917/rips.016.0317
Type :  Studies
URL Cairn:
Title :  Interactional regulation of emotions in hospital work
Author(s) :  Michèle, Grosjean
Abstract :  Patient-care in hospitals arouses strong affects which professionals are generally considered to have under control. The issue of this paper is the study of the social regulation of these affects. From an interactionist perspective and with conversational analysis methods, this paper studies the forms and modalities of sharing emotions and the different types of interactional emotional regulation in the care team. The studied materials come from an ethnographic research on nurses’ communications with patients and professionals in three departments of three French hospitals.
Keywords:  interaction, emotions, hospital work, patient, care, medical, hospital
Pages :  339 - 355
DOI :  10.3917/rips.016.039
Type :  Studies
URL Cairn:
Title :  Founding myths and social system? How we can read their relations
Author(s) :  Jean-Claude, Filloux
Abstract :  How can we interpret the effects of the founding myth of a society, such as the society of the Dogons, which has been studied since the 1940s by Marcel Griaule’s team who have published many books on the subject? Françoise Michel Jones’s recent book, Retour aux Dogon, questions the classic hypotheses which link the myth to the consensual aspects of social life. An approach which is both psychosociological and psychoanalytic should on the contrary, by emphasising in particular the role of twinhood in the myth, make it possible better to grasp the meaning of the conflicts in caste relationships and between men and women in Dogon society: a style of interpretation that is exemplary and perhaps can be generalised.
Keywords:  Founding myths, social system, relations
Pages :  357 - 365
DOI :  10.3917/rips.016.0357
Type :  Research paper
URL Cairn:
Title :  Book review. Marc UHALDE (sous la direction de), L’INTERVENTION SOCIOLOGIQUE EN ENTREPRISE De la crise à la régulation sociale, Paris, Desclée de Brouwer, 2001
Author(s) :  André, Lévy
Pages :  366 - 371
DOI :  10.3917/rips.016.0366
Type :  Book review
URL Cairn:
Title :  Feldman, J. (2000). L'éthique dans la pratique des sciences humaines: dilemmes. Editions L'Harmattan.
Author(s) :  Oscar, Ortsman
Pages :  367 - 369
Type :  Book review
Title :  Blaise, O., & Renaud, S. (2001). L’Entreprise en débat dans la société démocratique. Paris, Presses de Sciences Po.
Author(s) :  Oscar, Ortsman
Pages :  369 - 370
Type :  Book review
Title :  Blanchard-Laville, C., & Fablet, D. (2001). Pratiques d'intervention dans les institutions sociales et éducatives. Editions L'Harmattan.
Author(s) :  Annie-Charlotte, Giust
Pages :  370 - 372
Type :  Book review
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