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By Bjorn Gustavsen

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Extra info for Dialogue and Development: Theory of Communication, Action Research and the Restructuring of Working Life

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To the extent that research becomes involved in concrete restructuring of human practice, there is consequently a call for a new theory to provide a basis for this type of activity. Otherwise it can not be defended as research. The discourse on action research Since its origins in the 1940s. action research has been a controversial phenomenon. When this type of research appeared in Scandinavian working life in the 1960s and early 70s', it drew much criticism. It was, for instance, argued that action research is not "scientific" since it is unable to keep the distance and neutrality in relation to reality which forms an essential part of the concept of "science".

A broad right to raise work environment issues on the local level. - An obligation to make active efforts to map, or uncover, work environment problems. ( - Participatory rights for the workers. The duty to develop a local understanding of the situation and a corresponding improvement programme. - Inclusion in the reform of specific rules about organization of work, to improve on conditions for direct worker participation, in the work environment improvement process. - Provided that there is agreement between the local parties they must have a broad right to exercise their own judgment concerning problems and action.

This is a major question and only a few remarks will be made on it here. It is, of course, possible to ask why a few remarks only on such a major question? The set of criteria as presented in Chapter I is only meant to be a preliminary operationalisation, not a "final list". It is open to change and restructuring in the light of experience. Consequently, it becomes somewhat less important to have a carefully worked out defence of exactly this list. g. Haberrnas. Habermas develops his criteria of free communication on the basis of necessary - but generally implicit - stipulations which can be seen as linked to certain types of arguments or claims made in discussions.

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