UTVEI – Exploring counselling interviews in NAV

UTVEI – Exploring counselling interviews in NAV

Research-based development work in collaboration with counsellors

Communicating with service users is a key activity for counsellors in NAV (The Norwegian Labour and Welfare Administration). Meetings with service users are central in strategies for the achievement of political goals, such as work life affiliation and service user involvement. A variety of methods exist to support the counsellors in their interaction with service users, but any method needs to be adjusted and assessed in relation to the individual user’s needs, resources and communicative contributions in the meeting.

Researchers in the field of Applied Linguistics plan to conduct an empirical study of counselling interviews in NAV, using methods and concepts from conversation analysis and activity analysis, leaning on knowledge about institutional interaction from other user-centred contexts.

Based on the empirical analyses, the team will develop workshops for NAV counsellors, presenting key concepts and findings, thus providing a vocabulary and shared knowledge for continuous improvement of the dynamics and quality of counselling interviews. The overarching research question guiding the project is: How can analysis of authentic counselling interviews contribute to improved interaction between NAV counsellors and service users and, in turn, facilitate service user involvement?

The project is designed in two steps: Step I includes collection of empirical data and detailed analysis of patterns of interaction in the counselling interviews. Step II involves generation of research-based knowledge in collaboration with the counsellors and developing specific communicative solutions and strategies for improving the quality of counselling interviews.

Project period: 01/08/2016–31/07/2018
Funding body: The Norwegian Labour and Welfare Administration
Project owner: Faculty of Humanities, NTNU
Project management: NTNU Social Research