This paper explores how critical research might impact on social practice. Over the past decade, Piper and colleagues have identified the negative implications of the moral panic around child abuse in constraining intergenerational relationships and in diminishing the ability and commitment of adults acting in loco parentis to benefit young people in education, childcare, and sports coaching. Achieving impact in this area is complex and challenging because the research outcomes run counter to powerful social discourses and institutional interests and the researchers have limited communicational resources. In response, this paper proposes a new conceptualisation of the research topic, drawing on Aristotelian ideas of employing wisdom and professional judgment in pursuit of doing the right thing. Based on this analysis, an impact strategy is discussed which purposefully interrupts the ‘no touch’ discourse in coaching via a social media campaign that emphasises positive memories and motivations of sports coaches working with young people.
- © 2013 International Institute for Qualitative Research, University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign