Established through the ARCS (Action Research Church and Society) project in 2006-2010 at Heythrop College, University of London, in collaboration with the Oxford Centre for Ecclesiology and Practical Theology, Ripon College Cuddesdon, the methodology of theological action research was established to help faith-based organisations and church groups adopt an approach to research which would help bring about definite and practical changes within that their agency or community.
In particular TAR aims to assist these organisations in defining and seeking new ways of taking up their mission amidst a rapidly changing and increasingly secular, post-modern and post-Christian society. In addition, theological action research makes a particular contribution to academic theology, especially ecclesiology, in enabling the voices of theology ‘on the ground’ to become active parts of the theological discourse.
Recently, these theological research methods have been used in large scale projects, including work with leaders of Catholic schools across England and Wales in the Visions for Educational Leadership Project, and by the charity Catholic Marriage Care in collaboration with Roehampton University and funded by the Plater Trust. More recently a project has been undertaken with the Susanna Wesley Foundation.
More information about this work can be found on the dropdown list of projects on the main navigation bar above.