Title

Meaning of Everyday Food-Related Occupations: A Qualitative Study with Individuals in Cross-Cultural Transition

Location

Soo Line

Start Time

18-10-2014 2:20 PM

End Time

18-10-2014 2:50 PM

Session Type

Research Paper

Abstract

BACKGROUND AND RATIONALE:

Movement of people is part of increasing globalization. It is expected that more people will experience a transition from living in one culture into another. This transition to cross-cultural living influences daily routines and occupations in peoples’ lives and might also influence the individual meaning of occupation. Meaning is an important subject to Occupational Science as it is a parameter of human occupation (Hocking, 2000), and a basic assumption is that meaningful occupations may influence health and well-being in general (Wilcock, 2006).

PURPOSE:

This study sought to identify the meanings of food-related occupations in individuals in cross-cultural transition.

METHOD:

A phenomenological approach was used as this study’s research methodology (Creswell, 2003). In-depth interviews explored the meaning of the lived experience of food-related occupations.

Four adults (3 male, 1 female) who moved to Germany two to twelve months prior to the interview and who came from different cultural backgrounds (Austria, Iran, UK, USA) participated in this study.

Data was collected by in-depth interviews and accompanied by two small questionnaires. The semi-structured interview guide focused on an item the participants chose as related to one of their food-related occupations and which they brought to the interview, as well as on the occupation and it's meaning. Questions were open-ended and, for instance, asked to describe the item, how the occupation was experienced, and how this experience changed in transition. Participants gave feedback on the case summary via questionnaire.

In order to work out the essence of the meaning of experienced food-related occupations, the researcher described her own experience for following bracketing and a qualitative content analysis (Kuckartz, 2012) was performed by creating case summaries, building codes and categories and synthesizing the findings of the four interviews.

RESULTS & DISCUSSION:

As the study will be completed in February 2014, the results are preliminary, but they indicate a similarity between the participants’ origin of meaning in food-related occupations. The meaning seems to have roots in their culture- and family-background. It also can be derived that the cross-cultural transition may not have changed the meaning of the occupation but the awareness of it. The findings will contribute to the understanding of meaning regarding occupation and its origin, as well as the influence of meaningful occupations in cross-cultural transition.

Key words: meaning, food-related occupation, cross-cultural transition

References

Creswell, J. W. (2003). A qualitative inquiry and research design. Thousand Oaks, Calif.: Sage Publication.

Hocking, C. (2000). Occupational science: A stock take of accumulated insights. Journal of Occupational Science, 7, 58-62.

Kuckartz, U. (2012). Qualitative Inhaltsanalyse: Methoden, Praxis, Computerunterstützung. Weinheim: Beltz Juventa.

Wilcock, A. A. (2006). An occupational perspective on health. 2nd ed.. Thorofare: SLACK Incorporation.

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Oct 18th, 2:20 PM Oct 18th, 2:50 PM

Meaning of Everyday Food-Related Occupations: A Qualitative Study with Individuals in Cross-Cultural Transition

Soo Line

BACKGROUND AND RATIONALE:

Movement of people is part of increasing globalization. It is expected that more people will experience a transition from living in one culture into another. This transition to cross-cultural living influences daily routines and occupations in peoples’ lives and might also influence the individual meaning of occupation. Meaning is an important subject to Occupational Science as it is a parameter of human occupation (Hocking, 2000), and a basic assumption is that meaningful occupations may influence health and well-being in general (Wilcock, 2006).

PURPOSE:

This study sought to identify the meanings of food-related occupations in individuals in cross-cultural transition.

METHOD:

A phenomenological approach was used as this study’s research methodology (Creswell, 2003). In-depth interviews explored the meaning of the lived experience of food-related occupations.

Four adults (3 male, 1 female) who moved to Germany two to twelve months prior to the interview and who came from different cultural backgrounds (Austria, Iran, UK, USA) participated in this study.

Data was collected by in-depth interviews and accompanied by two small questionnaires. The semi-structured interview guide focused on an item the participants chose as related to one of their food-related occupations and which they brought to the interview, as well as on the occupation and it's meaning. Questions were open-ended and, for instance, asked to describe the item, how the occupation was experienced, and how this experience changed in transition. Participants gave feedback on the case summary via questionnaire.

In order to work out the essence of the meaning of experienced food-related occupations, the researcher described her own experience for following bracketing and a qualitative content analysis (Kuckartz, 2012) was performed by creating case summaries, building codes and categories and synthesizing the findings of the four interviews.

RESULTS & DISCUSSION:

As the study will be completed in February 2014, the results are preliminary, but they indicate a similarity between the participants’ origin of meaning in food-related occupations. The meaning seems to have roots in their culture- and family-background. It also can be derived that the cross-cultural transition may not have changed the meaning of the occupation but the awareness of it. The findings will contribute to the understanding of meaning regarding occupation and its origin, as well as the influence of meaningful occupations in cross-cultural transition.

Key words: meaning, food-related occupation, cross-cultural transition