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Australasian Human Research Ethics Consultancy Services Pty Ltd (AHRECS)

Research, Ethics And Risk In The Authoritarian Field (Books: Marlies Glasius, et al | 2018)

 


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Abstract
In this introduction to Research, Ethics and Risk in the Authoritarian Field, we explain why and how we wrote this book, who we are, what the ‘authoritarian field’ means for us, and who may find this book useful. By recording our joint experiences in very different authori- tarian contexts systematically and succinctly, comparing and contrasting them, and drawing lessons, we aim to give other researchers a framework, so they will not need to start from scratch as we did. It is not the absence of free and fair elections, or repression, that most prominently affects our fieldwork in authoritarian contexts, but the arbitrariness of authoritarian rule, and the uncertainty it results in for us and the people in our fieldwork environment.

Keywords
Authoritarianism, Field research, Reflection, Uncertainty, Qualitative research, Fieldwork methods

Glasius, M., de Lange, M. Bartman, J. Dalmasso, E. Lv, A. Sordi, A.D. Michaelsen, M. Ruijgrok, K.(2017). Research, Ethics and Risk in the Authoritarian Field, Springer International Publishing
Publisher (Open Access): https://link.springer.com/content/pdf/10.1007%2F978-3-319-68966-1.pdf

Contents

1 Introduction
Why This Book
Who We Are
What Is the Authoritarian Field?
How We Experience Authoritarianism
Beyond ‘Westerners’ and ‘Locals’
How We Wrote This Book
Who This Book Is For
References

2 Entering the Field
Ethics Procedures
Gaining Entry: Permits and Visas
Constrained Choices
Not So Dangerous
And Yet It Can Be Dangerous
Assessing Risk in Advance
Going the Anthropologist Way
Encountering the Security Apparatus
Data Security Trade-Offs
Chapter Conclusion: Planning Ahead and Accepting Risk
References

3 Learning the Red Lines
Hard Red Lines
Fluid Lines
Depoliticizing the Research
Wording
Getting Locals to Vet Your Wording
Behaviors
Shifting Red Lines—Closures
Shifting Red Lines—Openings
Chapter Conclusion: Navigating the Red Lines
References

4 Building and Maintaining Relations in the Field
Building Connections
Local Collaborators
Refusals
Testing the Waters
Work with What You Have
Where to Meet
Triangulation, Not Confrontation
Sensitive Information
Being Manipulated
Doing Things in Return
Chapter Conclusion: Patience, Trust, and Recognition
References

5 Mental Impact
Targeted Surveillance
Stress, Fear, and Paranoia
Betrayal and Disenchantment
Hard Stories
The Field Stays with Us
Attending to and Coping with Mental Impact
Pressure to Get Results
Positive Mental Impact
Chapter Conclusion: Talk About It
Reference

6 Writing It Up
The Call for Transparency
Interviews with ‘Ordinary People’
Interviews with ‘Expert Informants’
Interviews with ‘Spokespersons’
Protective Practices
Off-the-Record Information
Anonymity vs. Transparency
Transparency About Our Practices, Not Our Respondents
A Culture of Controlled Sharing
Archiving Our Transcripts
Writing, Dissemination, and Future Access
Chapter Conclusion: Shifting the Transparency Debate
References

Dos and Don’ts in the Authoritarian Field



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