Participatory Action Research and Economic Democracy

Thursday, Nov 5, 2015
5:00 - 6:30 pm
Room 9-451

Presented by Dr. Katrin Kaeufer, Research Director, Presencing Institute & Senior Research Fellow of Social Innovation, MIT CoLab and Lily Steponaitis, Values-Based Banking Post-Graduate Fellow, MIT CoLab

Dr. Kaeufer and Lily Steponaitis are working with CoLab's 2015-16 class of Mel King Community Fellows and the Global Alliance for Banking on Values (GABV) to produce an MITx Massive Open Online Course about values-based banking.  They have been collaborating with the fellows, who work at GABV member banks, to research values-based banks around the world to better understand the key factors and best practices that support and drive these banks.  The MOOC aims to critically document this growing global movement for more ethical and sustainable banking practices.  The MOOC is also an opportunity to initiate and/or strengthen cross-network learning between GABV banks and the banking field more broadly.  These presenters will discuss how to create diverse and effecitve learning communities at large scale to share and produce knowledge for the purposes of advancing economic democracy.


MIT CoLab invites you to a weekly Participatory Action Research (PAR) speaker series on Thursday from October 15th - November 19th, 2015 from 5:00-6:30 PM in Room 9-451.  These talks are free and open to the public. 

PAR is a collaborative approach to inquiry, scholarship, and social justice in which the boundaries between "subjects" and "researchers" are blurred.  The subjects are no longer objects and become partners in the research process, which includes selection of the research topic, data collection and analysis, as well as decision-making about what action should happen as a result of the research findings.  Since PAR values situated knowledge and lived experience, innovation research methods outside the standard scientific framework are crucial to obtaining and analyzing information.  

In this series, we will explore how different individuals and organizations are practicing elements of participatory action research in their work to fight for labor rights, promote economic democracy, and organize against racial discrimination in the United States and abroad.  Futhermore, we will learn about creative methods to capture and disseminate knowledge with the aim of advancing social justice.