Conversation: the heart of our sensemaking research

Conversation is a uniquely human activity. It is an essential part of our social fabric. It is the key way in which we learn the opinions and perspectives of other people. That is why we use conversation as the basis of our sensemaking research. The conversation is about understanding people as sensemakers - how they make sense of their own world.  

How to use conversation in research

In conversations

  • Each person contributes around the same amount of talk

  • Each person asks questions, answers questions and makes statements

  • Each person can change the subject. Both have agency.

  • Conversations are emotional, and sometimes include laughing, smiling, frowning and other gestures.

When we interview people, we exert power

  • We imply to people that their answers have to conform to our view of the world

  • We label their world

When we use conversation in research

  • We understand them as people, not as respondents.

Contact Sue for more.

Tags: Language, Conversation


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