Polyphonic narration is inspired by the life story method of ethnographic investigation. Interviews are collected and a narrative is built by themes, until new aspects emerge. The name was created by Marianella Sclavi of Active Listening.
Problems and Purpose
A survey method, polyphonic narration provides for non-or semi-structured interviews to obtain a picture as representative as possible of the images and perceptions of a community with respect to a question, a territorial context, etc.
Origins and Development
This method is a re-proposal of the ethnographic method of "life stories" adapted to the context and communication of participatory processes, therefore with less research ambitions and greater need for political orientation.
Participant Recruitment and Selection
Participants are recruited through the "snowball" method — that is, starting from institutional figures, who usually coincide with the clients, the method proceeds by asking who else should be interviewed, possibly with positions and points of view from their own.
How it Works: Process, Interaction, and Decision-Making
The interviews, usually collected through "snowball" recruitment (asking the interviewees who else should have been interviewed), provide the narrative elements for a multi-part composition of the question / problem under investigation. The polyphonic narrative is an open system and its "representative" force is based on giving voice, as far as possible, to all points of view, even to the most idiosyncratic and to the most "unpleasant" ones . Interviews can be interspersed with public presentations and representativeness checks.
Influence, Outcomes, and Effects
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Analysis and Lessons Learned
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PP on composting plants in Rome
 Active Listening, For a cleaner and more civil Rome: composting and the art of listening Participatory path undertaken on the proposal of the Department of Environmental Sustainability of Rome Capital and of the Municipalities XIII and XV on behalf of AMA, Sep '18 - Feb 2019 , p. 15, https://drive.google.com/drive/u/0/folders/1nf0si9OW5dSq9HlauUrMTzDUGL0rLWfA (ril. 5/11/19).
Link 1. Active Listening, composting in Rome, https://www.ascoltoactive.net/progetti/prog for-participated/ compostaggio-e-arte-di-ascoltare/ (ril. 7/11/19).