7th Biennial ACSPRI Social Science Methodology Conference

Analysing situated meanings and figured worlds in Conversations about sustainability: bringing critical discourse analsysis (CDA) to NVivo 12
2020-12-03, 13:10–13:25, Zoom Breakout Room 2

Critical Discourse Analysis (CDA) as defined by James Gee (2011) focuses on the interactive construction of figured worlds (FW) in interview and related contexts. Figured worlds (Holland et al 1998) are an interactive reflection of the more stable Discourses (discursive identities) from which speakers make claims about the topic at hand. Being 'in the Discourse' in CDA also means having a position relative to the Conversations (competing discourses) about the relevant topic, e.g. sustainability, that typify the field. Qualitative software such as NVivo has a natural affinity with grounded coding interpretative approaches but appears less able to facilitate CDA. This paper - drawing on two sets of interview data from the UK and Australia - focuses on how the interactive and relational imagined communities (FW) of organisational practice in HEI sustainability teaching (UK) and reporting (Australia) can be analysed, memoed and coded. A core insight is that figured worlds (FW) are not only possible analytic categories for CAQDAS but that they are interactive accomplishments where agency relative to Discourses is possible.


The presentation 1) explains the CDA approach of Gee; 2) Identifies the key analytic categories of figured worlds and Conversations in D/discourse; 3) identifies the challenges for software coding approaches to manage such analysis; 4) exemplifies a solution to this using Nvivo tools; 5) draws conclusions about challenges and benefits


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