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Pragmatism as a Research Paradigm and Its Implications for Social Work Research

Faculty of Social Work, University of Calgary, Calgary, AB T2N 1N4, Canada
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Soc. Sci. 2019, 8(9), 255; https://doi.org/10.3390/socsci8090255
Received: 18 July 2019 / Revised: 30 August 2019 / Accepted: 3 September 2019 / Published: 6 September 2019
Debates around the issues of knowledge of, and for, social work and other social justice–oriented professions are not uncommon. More prevalent are the discussions around the ways by which social work knowledge is obtained. In recent years, social work scholars have drawn on the epistemology of pragmatism to present a case for its value in the creation of knowledge for social work and other social justice–oriented professions. The primary focus of this essay is on providing a critical review and synthesis of the literature regarding pragmatism as a research paradigm. In this essay, we analyze the major philosophical underpinnings and methodological challenges associated with pragmatism, synthesize the works of scholars who have contributed to the understanding of pragmatism as a research paradigm, articulate our thoughts about how pragmatism fits within social work research, and illustrate how it is linked to the pursuit of social justice. This article brings together a variety of perspectives to argue that pragmatism has the potential to closely engage and empower marginalized and oppressed communities and provide hard evidence for the macro level discourse. View Full-Text
Keywords: pragmatism; pragmatic research; social justice research; social work research pragmatism; pragmatic research; social justice research; social work research
MDPI and ACS Style

Kaushik, V.; Walsh, C.A. Pragmatism as a Research Paradigm and Its Implications for Social Work Research. Soc. Sci. 2019, 8, 255.

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