Research and Social Change
Social change refers to the process of addressing social problems by applying values, attitudes, and actions in a positive way. The world is faced with the challenge of finding responses to the forces of social change. Sometimes the social demands are too rapid in some areas like the developing world, and at other times the demands are too slow (John, 2013). They are also evident in areas that have been neglected either through the political process or the sharing of welfare benefits.
Research has provided a global perspective on social problems facing the world by providing a contemporary process in relation to social development. It has also provided knowledge to social institutions and the interconnections for social change. Various research projects have been carried out to establish social development challenges facing the world. They also provide the context of social crisis, and how society influences order and policy during social change (Karen Golden-Biddle, 2012). Moreover,it provides recommendations on how to deal with various social challenges encountered during the process of social change. Sometimes research can recommend more funding in some areas so that the results of the change can be sustainable. In other cases, it outlines how strategies and policies are developed by analyzing their social impacts in the process of social change and generating alternative policies in case a process of social transformation stalls (Grant, 1999).
Although an individual can become an agent of change, the researcher is the person behind the analysis of how attitudes, actions, and values can be used to initiate a positive social change. For instance, research on healthy sexuality can lead to a possible end to sexual violence in a community by providing information on how people can think positively about sexual health, violence, an , and the need to shun sexual violence at all costs.
A researcher needs to build a network with other people so that together they can speak up in one voice. Social change is always dependent on teamwork. As a researcher, I recognize the need to enlighten people on how social change can impact their lives. Research should facilitate the creation of strong connections with the community for the realization of shared goals. The researcher needs to get in touch with various social programs through participation. He/she also needs to declare his stand in terms of the social change process and to rally support from all corners so that individuals can initiate the change process themselves(John, 2013). . Communities are different, and there is always a need to involve the community partners because the researcher will require resources to succeed. For instance, in the case of sexual health change, there is a need to involve the nearest Sexual Health Center and the nearest Rape Crisis Center in order to harness diverse strengths.
To become a successful researcher and a graduate student, one needs to develop strong relationships with the people he meets as well as the colleagues, and teachers. Teachers will provide guidance to students who are cooperative. A researcher has a lot to learn from others especially whatever they have done on their own. As a graduate student, I will always aim to sharpen my skills in order to succeed. I also need to prioritize my research and focus on its completion. Lastly, I will develop a timeline that is realistic and achievable in order to succeed in my work(Martin Brett Davies, 2014).
Grant, C. A. (1999). Multicultural research: A reflective engagement with race, class, gender and, sexual orientation. New York, NY: Psychology Press.
John, E. P. (2013). Research, actionable knowledge, and social change: reclaiming social responsibility through research partnerships. New York, NY: Stylus Publishing,.
Karen Golden-Biddle, J. E. (2012). Using a positive lens to explore social change and organizations: Building a theoretical and research foundation. New York, NY: Routledge.
Martin Brett Davies, N. H. (2014). Doing a successful research project: Using qualitative or quantitative methods. London: Palgrave Macmillan.
Schratz, M.& Walker, R. W. (2005). Research as social change: New opportunities for qualitative research. London: Routledge.