Handbook of Research Methods on Social Entrepreneurship
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Handbook of Research Methods on Social Entrepreneurship

Edited by Richard Seymour

Defining ‘social entrepreneurship’ has in the past proved problematic, and debate continues concerning what it does and does not entail and encompass. This unique book frames the debates surrounding the phenomenon and argues that many of the difficulties relating to the study of social entrepreneurship are rooted in methodological issues. Highlighting these issues, the book sets out ideas and implications for researchers using alternative methodologies.
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Chapter 4: Participating in Research

Mathew Tasker, Linda Westberg and Richard G. Seymour


Mathew Tasker, Linda Westberg and Richard G. Seymour* Academics are increasingly choosing research environments that are rich in complexity and that provide an opportunity for learning. Furthermore, academics are realising that in some of these environments their active participation rather than passive observation would be beneficial. This chapter describes one such research setting, the project Mushuk Muyu. The Mushuk Muyu (meaning ‘new seed’) project was designed to recuperate the local indigenous Kichwa language and culture in the Ecuadorian Andes. The project was initially developed over the course of a 14-month period in the Ecuadorian Northern Andean area of Cayambe. A team of local teachers and community members worked with volunteers (including two authors of this chapter) to create a range of products. These outputs include 67 experimental multimedia classes for bilingual local schools, and four textbooks that were accepted for publication on a national scale by the Ministerio de Educación del Ecuador (MEE) and the Dirección Nacional de Educación Intercultural Bilingüe del Ecuador (DINEIB). Though the project continues to grow and develop in new and innovative ways, this chapter focuses on the initial 14-month period of activity. This chapter is motivated and initiated by the engaged practice of two of the authors, who developed and applied action research (AR) methods to understand the processes building the Mushuk Muyu social entrepreneurship project. AR is an important approach appropriate for tackling the complexity of community-based initiatives and ventures. It has only rarely been applied in the context of...

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