Reflections on longitudinal action research with the English National Health Service

Helen L. Walker, Christine Harland, Louise Knight, Chris Uden, Samantha Forrest

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


This paper reflects on a longitudinal collaborative action research programme between the Centre for Research in Strategic Purchasing and Supply and the UK National Health Service Purchasing and Supply Agency that has operated since 1995. During the collaboration, research has changed practice and practice has changed research. A framework for analysing change is introduced as a means of examining how supply strategy has changed during the course of the research. The framework is applied to three supply strategy cases of prosthetics, clinical waste and cardiology, illustrating how practice and research have changed and influenced the production of knowledge over time. The methodological, theoretical and managerial implications of such longitudinal action research programmes are reflected on.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)136-145
Number of pages10
JournalJournal of Purchasing and Supply Management
Issue number2
Early online date7 Apr 2008
Publication statusPublished - Jun 2008


  • supply strategy
  • longitudinal
  • action
  • collaborative
  • research


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