n Acta Academica - Challenges for participatory action research and indigenous knowledge in Africa

Volume 33, Issue 3
  • ISSN : 0587-2405


Participatory action research represents the convergence of two intellectual and practical traditions, that of action research and participatory research. Although participatory action research is by no means uncontentious, it has become a familiar term to social research practitioners. However, in recent years critiques of Western epistemologies by sociologists of knowledge, feminists, post-colonialists and post-modern scholars present challenges for participatory action research in Africa. This article critically examines epistemologies that support and underpin participatory action research. It particularly interrogates the dominance of Western epistemologies in supporting models of participatory action research used in Africa and elsewhere, and explores spaces for indigenous epistemologies and Western epistemologies to be performed together within participatory action research processes.

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