Edinburgh Research Explorer

Five Ways to Make a Difference: Perceptions of Practitioners Working in Urban Neighborhoods

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

  • Catherine Durose
  • Merlijn Van Hulst
  • Stephen Jeffares
  • Oliver Escobar
  • Annika Agger
  • Laurens De Graaf

Related Edinburgh Organisations

Open Access permissions



  • Download as Adobe PDF

    Rights statement: This is the peer reviewed version of the following article: Durose, C., Van Hulst, M., Jeffares, S., Escobar, O., Agger, A., & De Graaf, L. (2015). Five Ways to Make a Difference: Perceptions of Practitioners Working in Urban Neighborhoods. Public Administration Review, n/a-n/a., which has been published in final form at http://doi.wiley.com/10.1111/puar.12502. This article may be used for non-commercial purposes in accordance with Wiley Terms and Conditions for Self-Archiving.

    Accepted author manuscript, 675 KB, PDF document

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)576-586
JournalPublic Administration Review
Issue number4
Early online date10 Dec 2015
Publication statusPublished - 29 Jun 2016


This article responds to and develops the fragmented literature exploring intermediation in public administration and urban governance. It uses Q-methodology to provide a systematic comparative empirical analysis of practitioners who are perceived as making a difference in urban neighborhoods. Through this analysis, an original set of five profiles of practitioners—enduring, struggling, facilitating, organizing, and trailblazing—is identified and compared. This research challenges and advances the existing literature by emphasizing the multiplicity, complexity, and hybridity, rather than the singularity, of individuals perceived as making a difference, arguing that different practitioners make a difference in different ways. The authors set out a research agenda, overlooked in current theorization, that focuses on the relationships and transitions between the five profiles and the conditions that inform them, opening up new avenues for understanding and supporting practice.

Download statistics

No data available

ID: 22951944