This stream considers the practice, methods, ethics, and politics of using fieldwork to gather research data. Fieldwork is understood in its broadest sense from in-field structured and semi-structured interviews, through to long-term immersive ethnographic methods such as participant observation. Fieldwork can be mentally or physically challenging and exhilarating in equal measure, as well as throwing up dilemmas that even the best methods textbooks cannot predict or provide solutions to. This stream will enable you to debate different fieldwork approaches, dynamics, and dilemmas arising from many different disciplines.
Topics of interest to expand upon include (but are in no way limited to) the following:
- Managing the ‘messiness’ of fieldwork
- The interpretive gap between researcher and researched
- Researcher positionality and related ethical concerns
- Experiences of researcher vulnerability when conducting fieldwork
- Using creative and sensory methods in fieldwork
- Managing and maintaining field relations (during and after leaving the field)
- Recording, analysing, and disseminating nuanced and complex fieldnotes, including non-textual fieldnotes.