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Introduction

Many managers find that they are required to manage projects. In this unit we aim to help you to take an overview of the features of a project and the issues that arise in managing a project. Once you have identified a piece of work as a project, you are able to use a number of management approaches that have proven effective in managing projects. A project is a one-off, non-repeated activity or set of tasks that achieves clearly stated objectives within a time limit. Most projects are goal-o
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Learning outcomes

By the end of this unit, you should be able to:

  • identify your objectives;

  • assess what you have to offer;

  • balance these against a practical framework of your personal circumstances;

  • explore a range of reference sources to select what is most relevant;

  • prepare an action plan, including evaluation of achievements;

  • produce ongoing strategies to develop your voluntary work;

  • understand employersâ
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1.12 The politics of representation

We turn now to consider Diana as an icon, as the subject of discourse. It could be said that Diana and the many words written about her form a discursive space (Gilbert et al., 1999; Silverstone, 1998). She is the rather enigmatic centre of many competing representations of royalty, femininity, democracy, the family, morality, celebrity, fashion, private versus public life which jostle with each other. Such a discursive space is a place of argument. To use another metaphor, it i
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1.11.1 Subject positions

In her analysis, Blackman is identifying a pattern in Diana's talk and relating it to other similar methods of self-representation found in our culture. It is worth thinking through this in more detail. One key claim of discourse researchers is that language positions people – discourse creates subject positions. What does this mean? To speak at all is to speak from a position (remember the discussion of footing in the previous section). Further than this, the positions or slots in c
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1.8.1 Discursive practices are flexible

In general terms, then, the interaction order is not a set of hard and fast rules which people follow like social dopes. Rather, discursive practices are flexible and creative resources. Genres may be mixed together and new genres can emerge. Part of the task of ethnographers of communication is to try to describe the diversity across social situations. In effect, they are charting what they call communicative ecologies (Gumperz, 1999): the variable and dynamic discursive practices fou
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1.7.1 Footing

The practices which make up a speech event or the interaction order can be quite fine grained. In documentary programmes such as Panorama, for instance, interviewers have to be particularly sensitive to the accusation that they are biased, that they are not sufficiently detached or impartial. As Clayman (1992) demonstrates, one way interviewers achieve this while still asking pertinent and provocative questions is through adjusting their footing. The term ‘footing’ again com
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1.1 Introduction

In this reading I focus on a piece of data to introduce some of the main themes and issues in discourse research. The material I have chosen to examine has historical interest. It is a public text of some import for British society and yet it also has a curiously private and confessional aspect. I am going to look at extracts from Princess Diana's interview with Martin Bashir which was screened in 1995 on Panorama – a British news-documentary television programme.

What was stri
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References

Alesina, A. and Perotti, R. (2004) ‘The European Union: a politically incorrect view’, Journal of Economic Perspectives, vol.18, no.4, pp. 27–48.
Buti, M., Eijffinger, S. and Franco, D. (2003) ‘Revisiting the Stability and Growth Pact: grand design or internal adjustment?’, CEPR Discussion Papers, 3692, Centre For Economic Policy Research, London.
Bro
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1.6.1 Introduction

Of course, there is another problem hovering in the background in respect to the Euro's international role: namely that of the enlargement of the EU. In the light of the analysis so far two areas are picked out here: monetary implications and fiscal policy implications. These are obviously closely related. Both of these raise questions about the costs involved for the new members and those set to join somewhere down the line. We concentrate on the monetary issue of joining the Euro-zone first
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1.5.2 Consequences of introducing the Euro into the international system

The jump in the Euro as currency of choice for bond denomination in 1999 in part reflects the advent of the Euro as a common currency across the Euro-zone. But is has also encouraged those countries in the EU who are not in the Euro-zone, or those not in the EU at all, to borrow in Euros as well. The point about the consolidation and integration of the Euro bond market discussed in Author(s): The Open University

1.4.2 Struggles over the SGP

The real political struggles emerged at the end of 2003 when France and Germany were called to account by the Commission for overtly breaking the 3 per cent deficit rule. The background to this dispute can be seen in the data presented in Table 3. Clearly, although the EU-15 as a whole were ke
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1.2.2 Summary

  • The EU-15/25 is a large and prosperous player on the world economic stage.

  • It represents a continental-sized economy, able to compete with the USA and Japan (and China and India, somewhere down the line).

  • The new EU members who joined in 2004, and those lining up to join later, are at a different level of development to the EU-15.

  • This will pose considerable challenges for those managing and governing the n
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1.1 Managing the European economy after the introduction of the Euro

In many ways the introduction of the Euro both begged the question of an integrated financial system for Europe (or the Euro-zone in the first instance) and was stimulated by its own success. This success can be measured in terms of a relatively low-inflation economy and, after a shaky start, the Euro's emergence as an international currency of some repute. Thus one of the first issues to deal with in this unit is the background to the institutional changes that Economic and Monetary Union (E
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Acknowledgements

The content acknowledged below is Proprietary (see terms and conditions) and is used under licence.

Grateful acknowledgement is made to the following sources for permission to reproduce material in this unit:

Figures

Figure 4 Institute of British Geographers; Tube
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4.3 Summary

If social researchers are to be effective in understanding people, they need to be detached from common sense (the perspective of the person on the street). However, they should not be so detached that they fall into the trap of imposing their own categories upon the object without regard for the experience of those involved (the perspective of the expert).

The standpoint of the ‘stranger’ provides a way of mediating between the detached position of the scientist and the personal ex
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2.2 The challenge of methods

The methodological challenges facing the social sciences are best outlined in the form of a series of questions about how we should engage in research and what kind of research attitude is appropriate.

  • Should social scientists look to the assumptions and methods developed in the natural sciences or develop their own assumptions and methods?

  • Do the objects which we study in the social sciences, such as the self, society, the economy, i
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Introduction

In a complex and rapidly changing world, social scientific study examines how we produce things, communicate, govern ourselves, understand our environments, and how to solve the problems we face in the organisation of social relations and processes. This unit provides a basic overview of how social science contains deeply embedded cultural assumptions and outlines the important relationship between philosophical thinking and practical research methods in social sciences.

This material
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10 Further resources

A very useful overview of ‘migration’ can be found in Lewis (2003). A special issue of Critical Social Policy (2002, vol.22, no.3) on ‘Asylum and welfare’ focuses on refugees, asylum seekers and migration. Kushner's The Holocaust and the Liberal Imagination (1994) and London's Whitehall and the Jew (2000) provide comprehensive analyses of UK approaches to refugees in the 1930s.

In such a rapidly changing area of social policy, up-to-date information and anal
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9 Conclusion

In this unit we have explored the mutual constitution of personal lives and social policy through an analysis of the implications of different aspects of citizenship on the lives of refugees and asylum seekers. We have seen that legislation, social policy and practice concerned with asylum have profound effects on personal lives. Crucially, we saw that the very words used to describe people, their access to welfare, rights to work, legal status and the procedures for becoming a British citize
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8.1.1 What kind of evidence has been used in this unit?

We have used personal stories as evidence to support arguments about the mutual constitution of personal lives and social policy. The people in our stories all came to, or stayed in, the UK primarily because they saw it as a place of safety, not because of the welfare benefits or services they hoped to receive, and we have contrasted this with dominant discourses about (bogus) asylum seekers for whom welfare in the UK is said to act as a magnet. These dominant or official discourses, echoed b
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