Data collection for Innovation Diffusion Process Documentation (IDPD) begins

Literature on innovation diffusion is largely based on experiences in developed countries, and there is a need to study technology diffusion and its integration in schools as the process unfolds. The purpose of the Innovation Diffusion Process Documentation (IDPD) study is to obtain perspectives from multiple stakeholders regarding their perceptions of the purpose, affordances, constraints, implementation and the potential impact of the Connected Learning Initiative (CLIx). The study intends to document and analyse how an innovative intervention such as CLIx unfolds in the field and how the key concerns, roles, expectations and ideas of innovation evolve during the course of the intervention life span. The framework of this study draws from Everett Rogers’ work on Innovation Diffusion (1983) as well as the Concerns based Adoption Model (CBAM) by Hall and Hord (1987).

The tools for the study were prepared in September 2016 and received the approval of the Institute Review Board of TISS and MIT by December 2016. Data collection commenced in  late December with stakeholders in Rajasthan and Chhattisgarh. This included key informant interviews with field implementation team members. The Focus Group Discussion method was used to gather data from the Field Support Persons which entailed preparation of a mind map based on the Discussion Guide. The use of mind maps as a conceptual tool to focus the discussion has been recorded in literature, and preliminary observations based on its use in Chhattisgarh, Telangana and Rajasthan show that it serves as an important tool and an artefact of the documentation process.  The next rounds of data collection would happen in April/May 2017 and in August/September 2017.

Feedback received from the field implementation teams indicate that such an exercise of data gathering on the process of innovation diffusion also allows sharing among the key stakeholders, ideating about the key concerns, opportunities and challenges, and converging on the key thrust areas of CLIx, besides providing an opportunity to document field level reflections that can feed this data into the implementation design. This is indeed keeping in line with the action research approach which CLIx adopts.

[Archana Mehendale, Team Lead and Professor, Research team, CLIx]

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