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Building a culture of civic engagement within University Continuing Education Heather McRae, EdD University of Victoria, Victoria, BC Canada.

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Presentation on theme: "Building a culture of civic engagement within University Continuing Education Heather McRae, EdD University of Victoria, Victoria, BC Canada."— Presentation transcript:

1 Building a culture of civic engagement within University Continuing Education Heather McRae, EdD University of Victoria, Victoria, BC Canada

2 Organization of the presentation A.Case Study Research Common space for civic engagement Terms used in this study Theoretical framework Research questions Methodology Findings Recommendations B. Asset-based community engagement project Purpose Literature review Methodology Findings to date

3 A. Case Study Research: Finding common space for civic engagement Community Organizations Community- based Research University Community Common space University Continuing Education

4 Terminology University Continuing Education (UCE) Community-based Research (CBR) Community Organizations (CO) Civic Engagement Community-university partnerships Common Space Asset-based community development

5 Theoretical framework Based on the work of 2 social theorists: Jürgen Habermas (1987). The theory of communicative action: Vol.2, lifeworld and system: A critique of functionalist reason Charles Taylor (2004). Modern social imaginaries

6 Belief that public debate is necessary for social change Linguistic communication and the goals of civil society are incorporated into a moral framework The concepts of system, lifeworld and seam provide a structure for understanding the tensions between the groups Habermas :

7 The development of common space is necessary for building a just and tolerant society (Taylor, 2004,p. 104) Exchanges between people allows for discussion about what is as well as what could be Goal is to develop mutual understanding Taylor:

8 The development of common space for civic engagement This space would be recognized as a space for supporting social change Group members would establish norms to support discourse, the development of common understanding and conflict resolution The outcomes would address social problems of concern in society

9 SystemLifeworld Common space for dialogue is located at the seam between the system and lifeworld Situating common space

10 Research questions 1. Is there interest in building common space ? 2. What are the gaps and the tensions between the three groups? 3. Are there specific strategies that will develop and improve community-university collaborations ? 4. What would be the role for UCE professionals and what issues or constraints could limit UCEs participation?

11 Methodology Bounded case study involving a total of 15 participants Interviews, survey (UCE participants), review of reports Organization of data based on 18 codes relating to system, lifeworld or seam

12 System: administration, money/resources, organizational support, recognition, accountability, accessibility, legitimacy, system for knowledge mobilization Seam: changes in practice or policy, new ways of working together Lifeworld: time, relationship building, personal skills and attributes, sharing of knowledge, commitment, partnerships and collaborations, communication and language, learning and skill acquisition

13 Findings 1.Only the CBR and CO respondents shared common space as defined in this study 2.The tensions identified by all respondents relate to: resources (money), reciprocity, relationship building and recognition. 3. A number of factors influenced UCEs participation in developing a common collaborations 4.There is evidence of differentiation between the system requirements and the lifeworld for UCE

14 A new perspective on the relationship between common space, system and lifeworld Lifeworld System Common space for dialogue involves addressing lifeworld needs and system tensions throughout the partnership

15 Recommendations 1.A civic engagement model for UCE 2.An asset-based approach to civic engagement 3.Involvement from local and national organizations 4.Participation in applied research

16 B. Community Engagement Project Development of a working group: Partnerships in Learning and Civic Engagement (PLACE) Creation of a community of practice to explore the notion of engagement and how to operationalize it within a continuing studies unit Decision to focus on a Division-wide asset-based community mapping initiative to better understand and support the human and social capital

17 Literature Review Engagement literature (Boyer; Holland; Furco) Asset-based development (Kretzmann & McKnight) Geographic mapping tools for communities (Guion & Golder; Parker; Vajjhala,) Community capacity building (Beaulieu; Fuller, Guy & Pletsch) Action research (Lewin; McTaggart) Organizational management (Bolman & Deal; Minzberg)

18 Methodology: Case study using an action research approach AnalysisPlanningActionObservingReflecting Lewins Action Research Model from: Dickens, L. & Watkins, K. (1999). Action Research: Rethinking Lewin. Management Learning, 30, 127-140.

19 Survey Results: What do you care about?

20 What assets do you bring to the workplace:

21 What do you excel at?

22 What is your ideal workplace?

23 Definition of Community

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