Pragmatism (or Realism) in Research: Is There an Ecohealth Scope of Practice?
In issue 12(4) of Ecohealth, Burns and Stephen (2015) examined how ecohealth might align with emerging infectious disease priorities. In preparing that paper, the question was asked, “What are the criteria to judge whether ecohealth is the right approach?” A scope of practice defines the responsibilities and problems that set boundaries within which a profession effectively and competently practices. We faced three problems when trying to define ecohealth’s scope of practice. First, most published work assessing research suitability focuses on post-project evaluation rather than specifying in advance the questions or situations for which an approach is best suited. Second, there are no universal criteria to judge methodological suitability or quality. Criteria are affiliated with discipline or philosophy of knowledge used by the evaluators. Being multi- to transdisciplinary, ecohealth struggles to identify which of these criteria are most suitable. Third, socio-ecosystems are...
KeywordsJournal Impact Factor Abductive Reasoning Pragmatic Philosophy Limited Evidence Base Pragmatic Research
This work was supported in part through a grant from the International Development Research Centre.
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