Responsive understanding from within conducting social investigations in social work

Ann-Margreth E. Olsson

Forskningsoutput: KonferensbidragSammanfattning


In this Dialogical Participatory Action Research (DPAR) study we were exploring and developing dialogical coaching in social work with M.M. Bakhtin as one of the most important inspiration sources. The investigating social workers had traditionally been trained to seek neutral approach and external clarity. In the study the social workers started to invite the children to participate as partners in conducting the social investigations creating increasing mutual involvement in dialogical interplay and collaboration. When the social workers addressed the children, inviting the children and their families into a mutually involving dialogical participation, exploring and inquiring both the risks and the strengths of the child’s relationships, the social workers wanted to obtain a responsive understanding, that is, getting an understanding from within the family system and the child’s perspective. In dialogical conversations it became possible for the social worker to act and support changes improving the lives of the children from within the perspective of the children. Hearing the voice of the child, in the way the child chooses to speak, the social worker was given an idea of the communicative style and orientation in the family as well as of the social conditions, from the child’s point of view, including the child’s strategies in managing his or her situation. In the coaching the social workers explored how every unique speech experience became shaped and developed in continuous and constant interaction with others’ utterances and narratives. In the study was traced, together with participating social workers, examples, ideas and narratives given in the context of the research which were experienced as striking or special events – once-occurrent events of being – examples that emerged for the participants as important and significant for the progress and impact of the projects and the study.


Konferens15 th International Bakhtin Conference. Bakhtin as Praxis: Academic Production, Artistic Practice, Political Activism 23-27 July, 2014 The Royal Art Academy, Stockholm.
Period80-01-01 → …

Nationell ämneskategori

  • Samhällsvetenskap (5)
  • Humaniora och konst (6)


  • dialog
  • dialogiskt samarbete
  • delaktighet
  • partnerskap
  • barn
  • socialarbetare
  • socialsekreterare
  • responsiv förståelse
  • begriplighet
  • social utredning
  • barns röster
  • slående ögonblick
  • unika händelser
  • bakhtin


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