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Edited by Marcella Milana and John Holford


The European Union is now a key player in making lifelong learning and adult education policy: this is the first book to explore a range of theoretical and methodological perspectives researchers can use to investigate its role. Chapters by leading experts and younger scholars from across Europe and beyond cover the evolution of EU policies, the role of policy ‘actors’ in what is often seen as the ‘black box’ of EU policy-making, and the contribution state theory can make to understanding the EU and its relations with Europe’s nations. They consider what theories of governmentality—drawing on the work of Foucault—can contribute. And they demonstrate how particular methodological approaches, such as ‘policy trails’, and the contribution the sociology of law, can make. Contributors include both specialists in adult education and scholars exploring how work from other disciplines can contribute to this field.

This is the first book in a new series from the European Society for Research on the Education of Adults, and draws on work within its Network on Policy Studies in Adult Education.

Stephen G. Parker, Jenny Berglund, David Lewin and Deirdre Raftery

international perspectives. In this vein, we welcome proposals for future issues from scholars from all parts of the world on topics of relevance to the journal’s broad remit, and from differing methodological standpoints. The long-form format of this journal makes the publication of in-depth studies uniquely


Edited by Peter Duffy, Christine Hatton and Richard Sallis

At a time when universities demand immediate and quantifiable impacts of scholarship, the voices of research participants become secondary to impact factors and the volume of research produced. Moreover, what counts as research within the academy constrains practices and methods that may more authentically articulate the phenomena being studied. When external forces limit methodological practices, research innovation slows and homogenizes.

This book aims to address the methodological, interpretive, ethical/procedural challenges and tensions within theatre-based research with a goal of elevating our field’s research practice and inquiry. Each chapter embraces various methodologies, positionalities and examples of mediation by inviting two or more leading researchers to interrogated each other’s work and, in so doing, highlighted current debates and practices in theatre-based research. Topics include: ethics, method, audience, purpose, mediation, form, aesthetics, voice, data generation, and research participants. Each chapter frames a critical dialogue between researchers that take multiple forms (dialogic interlude, research conversation, dramatic narrative, duologue, poetic exchange, etc.).

Gaming Methodology

Views on model building


Jan H. G. Klabbers

Microgenetic Methodology

Possibilities with Regard to Research on Learning and Instruction

Geerdina M. van der Aalsvoort, Paul van Geert and Henderien W. Steenbeek

Präzision und Kontingenz

Ein Spannungsfeld der Begriffsbestimmung

Stefan Müller and Christian Nerowski


Precision and Contingency. An Area of Tension in the Assignment of Scientific Concepts

Given the fact that the scientific discourse on education is based on educational- scientific concepts, it is surprising that the methodology of the assignment of these concepts is hardly addressed and reflected. This article raises a tension of the requirements of concepts in educational science between precision, accuracy and exactness on the one hand; and contingency, openness, and dynamics on the other hand. In this article we reject attempts to resolve the tension to only one side, which would mean to give preference to either precision or contingency and neglect the other side. In contrast we sketch a model for the assignment of educational-scientific concepts that unites both sides of the tension: If precision is understood as a requirement for the concept as a product, and the consideration of contingency is understood as a requirement for the process of the assignment, it is possible to assign concepts that both are precise and consider their contingency.

The Science of Religion: A Defence

Essays by Donald Wiebe


Donald Wiebe

Edited by Anthony Palma

Donald Wiebe, Professor of Philosophy of Religion at Trinity College, University of Toronto, has spent much of his academic career arguing for a clear demarcation between Theology and Religious Studies. The Science of Religion: A Defence offers a brilliant overview of Professor Wiebe's contributions on methodology in the academic study of religion, of the development of his thinking over time, and of his intellectual commitment to 'a science of religion'.

The work is divided into three parts. The first part identifies pertinent connections between 'religion', 'religious studies', and 'science' and why 'reductionism' in the academic study of religion, when properly applied, can bridge the explanatory gap between the sceptic and the devotee. The second part treats conceptual debates in the academic study of religion, with particular reference to the place of 'belief', 'understanding', and 'meaning' in the modern study of religion. The third part addresses the theological resistance to the scientific study of religion and how that resistance can be overcome. Finally, two new essays are included: a critique on ‘The Preconceptions of a Science of Religion’ by Anthony J. Palma, and an accompanying reply by Donald Wiebe.

The Science of Religion: A Defence is an essential resource for both scholarly and non-scholarly audiences alike, and will be of particular interest to both defenders and critics of a scientific study of religion.