Handbook of Participatory Research and Inquiry

The Handbook of Participatory Research and Inquiry traces the roots of the radical advancement of methods and gives space to exploring critical issues which need to be understood in order to do good participatory work such as facilitation, reflective practice power analysis, positionality and ethics. 

Most of the book is devoted to the methods themselves. Each chapter gives a detailed account of the method, critical design features, and detailed how-to steps contextualised in at least one detailed case study. This will equip the reader with the knowledge they need to actually practise the method. 

The Handbook is accessible via institutional libraries and available to purchase from SAGE. The first chapter is available to download for free here

On this page you can find news, events and blogs relating to the Handbook, as well as any free chapters available and resources that have evolved from the Handbook.

Take a look at the topics covered and the authors

Volume 1

Part 1: Introduction

Chapter 1: Introduction: Navigating the complex and dynamic landscape of participatory research and inquiry

Sonia M. Ospina, Danny Burns, & Jo Howard


Chapter 2: Challenges in the practice of participatory research and inquiry

Danny Burns, Jo Howard, & Sonia M. Ospina


Part 2: Key Influences and Foundations of Participatory Research

Chapter 3: Key Influences and Foundations of Participatory Research

Sonia M. Ospina


Chapter 4: Paulo Freire's Influence on Participatory Action Research

Fabio C. Campos & Gary L. Anderson


Chapter 5: Tropical Empathy: Orlando Fals Borda and Participatory Action Research

Alex Pereira & Joanne Rappaport


Chapter 6: Theatre is Knowledge: Augusto Boal's theatre of the oppressed and participatory research

Effie Makepeace


Chapter 7: Pragmatism: Linking systems, evolution, and democratization in participatory and action research

Davydd J. Greenwood


Chapter 8: Feminism and participatory research: Exploring intersectionality, relationships, and voice in participatory research from a feminist perspective

Batsheva Guy & Brittany Arthur


Chapter 9: Indigenous ways of knowing and participatory research

Fiona Cram & Anna Adcock


Chapter 10: The history, legacy and future of participatory rural appraisal 

Mariah Cannon, Tessa Lewin, & Robert Chambers


Chapter 11: Achieving scope and broad participation in participatory research: The 'dialogue democratic' network-based approach of Björn Gustavsen

Erik Lindhult


Chapter 12: Becoming participatory: Some contributions to action research in the UK

Cathy Sharp & Ruth Balogh


Chapter 13: Towards ever more extended epistemologies: Pluriversality and decolonisation of knowledges in participatory inquiry

Patricia Carolina Gayá


Chapter 14: Action research - participative self in transformative action

Hilary Bradbury


Part 3: Critical Issues in the Practice of Participatory Research

Chapter 15: Critical Issues in the practice of participatory research

Jo Howard & Danny Burns


Chapter 16: Facilitating participatory research

Bob Dick


Chapter 17: Reflexivity and reflection in action research: ‘To locate, again, a through line to the future’

Patta Scott-Villiers


Chapter 18: Positionality, academic research and cooperative inquiry: Lessons from participatory research with Roma

Jekatyerina Dunajeva & Violeta Vajda


Chapter 19: The fine art of getting lost: Ethics as a guide to transformative learning in participatory research

Mary Brydon-Miller, Alfredo Ortiz Aragón, & Victor J. Freidman


Chapter 20: Holding space for emotions in participatory action research: Reflections from the experiences of a youth organisation exploring PAR through creative practices

Liv Kaya Aabye, Gioel Gioacchino, & Fiammetta Wegner


Chapter 21: Power analysis for social change: Participatory learning and action

Jethro Pettit


Chapter 22: The ethics of co-production in practice: Reflections

Helen Thomas-Hughes & Morag McDermont


Chapter 23: Approaches and creative research methods with children and youth

Vicky Johnson & Andy West


Chapter 24: Don't leave us out: Disability inclusive participatory research - why and how?

Mary Wickenden & Erika Lopez Franco


Chapter 25: Interpeace’s experience with participatory action research in contexts of active and post-conflict

Daniel Hyslop


Part 4: Methods and Tools


Part 4.1: Dialogic and Deliberative Processes

Chapter 26: Reflections on the Role of Dialogue in Participatory Research and Inquiry

Mariana de Santibañes & Sonia M. Ospina


Chapter 27: Reflections on the reflect approach and its multiple evolutions

David Archer


Chapter 28: A dialogical approach to knowledge: Grassroots experiences from the south of Mexico

Gustavo Esteva


Chapter 29: Feeling-body-thinking approach and methodologies: Towards transformations in intercultural justice

Juan Carlos Giles M.


Chapter 30: Art of Hosting frameworks and methods as participatory research

Jodi R. Sandfort & Trupti Sarode


Chapter 31: Cooperative inquiry as dialogic process

Jo Howard, Sonia M. Ospina, & Lyle Yorks


Chapter 32: Creating spaces for participatory social learning and change with young people

Barry Percy-Smith


Chapter 33: Influencing global policy processes through participatory approaches

Erika Lopez Franco & Matt Davies


Part 4.2: Digital Technologies in Participatory Research

Chapter 34: Digital affordances for participation and the participation-cube

Tony Roberts


Chapter 35: Technologies for citizen inquiry: Participatory research in online communities

Maria Aristeidou, Eileen Scanlon, & Mike Sharples


Chapter 36: Interactive radio as a participatory digital research method

Anna Colom


Chapter 37: Writing women into Wikipedia

Japleen Pasricha & Annette JE Fisher


Chapter 38: Real-time statistics: Working towards community participation with mobile data collection in Oxfam

Simone Lombardini & Emily Tomkys Valteri


Chapter 39: Participatory digital mapping as a research method

Jon Corbett, Logan Cochrane, & Yasmine Zeid


Volume 2

Part 4.3: Participatory Forms of Action Orientated Research

Chapter 40: Show me the action! Understanding action as a way of knowing in participatory research

Alfredo Ortiz Aragón & Mary Brydon-Miller


Chapter 41: Tools for action: Media research as collaborative action research

Bo Reimer


Chapter 42: Memorialab: Dialogue, memory and social healing in Basque Country

Iñigo Retolaza Eguren


Chapter 43: A participatory self-in-field inquiry method

Hanna Kurland, Victor J. Friedman, Israel Sykes, Ruth Danino Lichtenstein, & Tilda Melamed


Chapter 44: The “action” turn: People’s Praxis

Nathalis Wamba


Chapter 45: Awareness-based action research: Making systems sense and see themselves

Otto Scharmer, Eva Pomeroy, & Katrin Kaufer


Chapter 46: Storytelling as participatory research

Joanna Wheeler & Felix Bivens


Chapter 47: Community based participatory research: Embracing Praxis for transformation

Nina Wallerstein, Lorenda Belone, Ellen Burgess, Elizabeth Dickson, Lisa Gibbs, Laura Chanchien Parajon, Margareta Ramgard, Payam Sheikhattari, & Gillian Silver


Chapter 48: Research, organizing and policy change: Methods and lessons on the path from participatory action research to a right to counsel in New York City

Alexa Kasdan


Chapter 49: The role of collective analysis in generating ownership and action in Systemic Action Research

Danny Burns


Part 4.4: Visual and Performative Methods

Chapter 50: Collective becoming: Visual and performative methodologies for participatory research

Tessa Lewin & Jackie Shaw


Chapter 51: Arpilleras as participatory research

Sara Kindon, Katia Guiloff, Ximena Riquelme, Fernanda Piraud, Marcela Palomino-Schalscha, Carla Batista, Katia Cisternas, Maribel Marquez-Satyanand, Nadia Batista, Maria-Fernanda Bernal, & Ines Marquez, with Marlena Angermann


Chapter 52: Digital story telling and researching women's empowerment in Bangladesh

Samia Afroz Rahim, Sahida Khondaker, & Maheen Sultan


Chapter 53: Photovoice

Cathy Vaughan & Sarah Khaw


Chapter 54: Asset mapping as a participatory research approach

Elizabeth Lightfoot, Jennifer Blevins, & Amano Dube


Chapter 55: Theatre for development as a participatory research tool

Oga Steve Abah


Chapter 56: The Method of Enactment and the framework of Design: Interdisciplinary Contributions to Participatory Research

Catalina Alzate


Chapter 57: Extended participatory video processes

Jackie Shaw


Part 4.5: Participatory Monitoring, Evaluation and Learning

Chapter 58: Participatory monitoring, evaluation and learning: Taking stock and breaking new ground

Marina Apgar & Will Allen


Chapter 59: Promoting adaptive programming through outcome mapping - The ‘Resilient Adolescents in the Syria Crisis’ programme (SAP)

Jan Van Ongevalle, Ana Kvintradze, David Miller, Gaël Rennesson, & Jeanette Lundberg


Chapter 60: The Most Significant Change Technique (MSC): A case study of how MSC helps communities unpack intangible outcomes

Jess Dart, Sophie Pinwill, & Avega Bishop


Chapter 61: Participatory Theory of Change: Reflecting on multiple views of how change happens

Marina Apgar & Boru Douthwaite


Chapter 62: Can voices at scale really be heard? Reflections from ten years of innovation with SenseMaker

Steff Deprez & Irene Guijt


Chapter 63: Ripple Effects Mapping: A participatory strategy for measuring program impacts

Rebecca Sero, Debra Hansen, Scott Chazdon, Laura Bohen, Lorie Higgins & Mary Emery


Chapter 64: Reality Check Approach and Immersion Research

Dee Jupp


Part 4.6: Mixing and Mashing Participatory and Formal Research

Chapter 65: Mixing and mashing participatory and formal research methods

Pauline Oosterhoff


Chapter 66: Mixed participatory and formal methods in studying violence towards men who have sex with men in Viet Nam

Tu-Anh Hoang


Chapter 67: Transitional ethnic female bodies and kaleidoscopic methodologies: Participatory research, feminist geographies and multi-sited ethnography

Angela Santamaria


Chapter 68: Participatory research in healthcare

Maria van den Muijsenbergh, Tomas de Brún, & Mary O’Reilly-de Brún


Chapter 69: Building in complementarity: Participatory mixed methods in research, monitoring and learning in modern slavery in India

Sowmyaa Bharadwaj, Stanley Joseph, Anusha Chandrasekharan, & Pradeep Narayanan


Chapter 70: Participatory network research: Using visual methods and participatory statistics for value chain analysis

Christian Stein & Lena J. Jaspersen


Part 5: Final Reflections

Chapter 71: Participatory research and the need for transformations in a world in crisis

Jo Howard, Sonia M. Ospina, & Danny Burns