Abstract of PhD Submission
Robyn Pound

Motivated initially by rights for children, particularly freedom from violence, this thesis explores the enhancement of children's well-being in family life. It shows the creation of a living theory of health visiting as I seek to understand, improve, evaluate and explain my support of developing family relationships. From increasingly collaborative relationships with parents, colleagues, educational researchers and others, alongsideness emerges as an explanation I found appropriate to my parenting, health visiting and researching. Alongsideness, meaning creating and sustaining connections that enhance collaborative enquiry, intends to support the generation of personal theory for application in practice.

The thesis shows how I found theory of human emotional need useful for understanding and raising awareness about the needs of people in relationships and for problem-solving. It illuminates the health-enhancing and educational possibilities of alongsideness for myself, children, their families and the communities they form. It shows how I question personal beliefs arising from my history, as I reflect on my values and attempt to embody them for living as I practise. Self-study enabled me to grapple with the dynamic, multi-dimensions of alongsideness in diverse situations, the dilemmas arising for understanding myself and for clarifying my practice values.

The thesis contributes to a new scholarship of enquiry for health visiting. It shows how values generated and embodied in the process of enquiring can be transformed into living standards of judgement both for evaluating practice and for judging my claims to knowledge. It explains how the generation of living theory through reflective action enquiry has potential for the improvement and explanation of practice.


You can download the PhD in chapters which are in PDF format

Abstract and Contentspage ii

Prologue and Chapter One - How do I promote rights for children in my health visiting practice with families and the communitypage 1

Chapter Two - How I came to grow an alongside epistemology and understand its relevance to health care page 25

Chapter Three - How has alongsideness grown in my practice?page 53

Chapter Four - Exploring alongsideness while applying it in different arenaspage 82

Chapter Five - How do I create alongside relationships as I work with Marianne and Brian page 108

Chapter Six - Developing alongsideness with Sally and Clare while solving problems page 137

Chapter Seven - Exploring contradictions raised by alongsideness in tertiary and community work page 160

Chapter Eight - Living standards of alongsideness translate into rights page 186

Glossary and Sources page 226

Appendices page 234

Bibliography page 239