Emergence of Nordic nursing research: no position is an Island

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Kristian Larsen, Lis Adamsen

This paper reports on a detailed analysis of findings from a larger study of 'Nordic nursing theorists and clinical nurses' reflections on and experience with production and use of research, theory and findings'. The development of nursing science in the Nordic countries goes back to the late 1970s. With use of a sociological approach the aim was to explore whether nursing science has constituted itself as an autonomous nursing research field in Bourdieu's terms. In-depth interviews were undertaken with a purposive sample of 10 professors drawn from seven universities in the Nordic countries. The interview agenda explored the participants' research activities and knowledge production. Our conclusion is that one cannot speak of nursing research in the Nordic countries as a fully developed and autonomous field. Yet we see the outlines of an emerging nursing research field with a common doxa. At least three distinct positions operate in Nordic nursing research: a clinical and applied oriented position, a profession and knowledge oriented position and a theoretical and concept oriented position. Epistemologically speaking the positions are of a 'spontaneous', 'cyclical' and 'break' character. In a relational perspective each position has created its specific form via its relations with other positions in the field.
Original languageEnglish
JournalScandinavian Journal of Caring Sciences
Volume23
Issue number4
Pages (from-to)757-66
Number of pages9
ISSN0283-9318
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2009

ID: 20008141