Posted on May 16, 2017

Phenomenology is one of the most influential philosophical perspectives on the contemporary intellectual scene. While Positivism is the dominant philosophical mode in a range of science and social science disciplines, phenomenology remains a major approach to a range of subjects including ethics, sociology, anthropology, hermeneutics, and cultural studies, and it is the root to a range of qualitative research methods including discourse analysis and interpretative phenomenological analysis (IPA). Phenomenology is also a major influence on existential psychotherapy. Nonetheless, most of the research methods curriculum is still Positivism orientated, and leaves little room for discussion of phenomenology. Part of the difficulty is that novice learners are alienated by the terminology adopted in phenomenology, and the central tenets of phenomenology are markedly different from Positivism-orientated methodologies.

In order to enhance public’s understanding in Phenomenology, the proposed IIDS project will comprise 6 seminars and 4 workshops in total. The seminars include 1) Phenomenology: a general introduction, 2) Modern Technology in the perspective of phenomenology, 3) Phenomenology and cultural and literary criticism, 4) Phenomenology, psychoanalysis, and gender studies; 5) Phenomenology and society; 6) Phenomenology, religion and culture. The workshops include: 1) Interpretative phenomenological analysis as a methodology in social sciences; 2) Phenomenology and Existential Psychotherapy; 3) Applying phenomenology and hermeneutics in the humanities; 4) Phenomenology in applied Ethics. PowerPoints of the seminars will be uploaded for the general public.

The proposed IIDS project will greatly enhance the teaching and learning of qualitative research methods, ethics, and literal critiques in the self-financed sector in tertiary education, and will initiate a dialogue between humanities, science, social science, and human services.