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Navigating the Field

Postgraduate Experiences in Social Research

Editors: Ajebon, Mildred Oiza, Kwong, Connie Y. M., Astorga de Ita, Diego (Eds.)

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  • Presents perspectives from postgraduates on fieldwork experiences
  • Offers conceptual, practical and contextual reflections on research methodology
  • Outlines the diversity of challenges in human geography and social science research
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eBook 64,19 €
price for India (gross)
  • ISBN 978-3-030-68113-5
  • Digitally watermarked, DRM-free
  • Included format: EPUB, PDF
  • ebooks can be used on all reading devices
  • Immediate eBook download after purchase
Softcover 74,99 €
price for India (gross)
  • ISBN 978-3-030-68112-8
  • Free shipping for individuals worldwide
  • Institutional customers should get in touch with their account manager
  • Covid-19 shipping restrictions
  • Usually ready to be dispatched within 3 to 5 business days, if in stock
About this book

This volume is a collation of postgraduate fieldwork experiences in social research that provides a platform for early career researchers (ECRs) to be open about the hidden labour of doing postgraduate fieldwork. This book documents diverse fieldwork experiences, gathering critical reflections on ‘the field’ from a wide range of ECRs. The issues presented here go from the process of identifying the field to navigating life in (and after) it, including things that happen in-between.

This text shows a different set of methodological considerations in relation to access, ethics, identity, positionality, power and practices, highlighting how ECRs' fieldwork experiences may help broaden traditional frameworks of research. Exploring how postgraduate researchers make sense of these issues and what kind of decisions they make in specific circumstances helps to reveal broader concerns, institutional practices and constraints. Through these reflections, this book makes an important point that there is a need for researchers to document the ‘real story’ behind fieldwork. The honesty and openness of contributors in this volume are positive steps towards fostering a research culture where reflections upon weaknesses and failures are as welcome as presentations of successful fieldwork techniques and methods.

The fact that this book is written and edited by ECRs, the topics it presents — both emerging and long-debated but still relevant — and the broad range of approaches make this text unique. We hope these points will make this work useful for researchers of all levels and across disciplines, and that this text will allow the reader to rethink some essential aspects of social research that are often taken for granted. We expect the diverse reflections offered in this book to appeal to researchers across disciplines at different stages of their career and that this will be a useful resource for researchers to map and navigate their own research pathways.

About the authors

Mildred Oiza Ajebon is currently a Research Fellow in the Department of Health Sciences, University of York, UK. She works on a Born in Bradford (BiB) birth cohort study, a globally recognised landmark study, which investigates inequalities in child health and wellbeing in the multi-ethnic and deprived population of Bradford. The role is in collaboration with the Bradford Institute for Health Research (BIHR). She completed her undergraduate degree (BSc Hons) in Geography and Regional Planning, University of Benin Nigeria. She was then trained in Geographical Information Systems (GIS) at both the University of Ibadan Nigeria and the University of Leeds UK. Mildred completed her PhD in Human Geography at Durham University with a focus on integrated approaches to understanding determinants of child health inequalities in Nigeria at different spatial scales. Her MSc (Leeds) and PhD degrees were sponsored by the Commonwealth Scholarships Commission in the UK. She obtained funding from the Schlumberger Faculty for the Future Programme towards her PhD fieldwork. Her PhD supervisors have backgrounds in the fields of anthropology, environmental epidemiology, human geography, medical humanities, and public health. Mildred is also an Associate Fellow of the Higher Education Academy (HEA), UK. She started her academic career at the Federal University of Technology, Minna. She later joined the University of Benin as a member of academic staff before starting a PhD at Durham University. Her research interests include GIS applications in health and environment. She has a strong interest in using mixed methods for understanding inequalities in global health, social risk and resilience, female agency, and population health.

Yim Ming Connie Kwong is currently a postdoctoral fellow of a BMBF-funded interdisciplinary and transdisciplinary project at Leibniz Centre for Tropical Marine Research in Germany. She is also a Member of the GCRF-funded Silk Route Cultural Heritage Network. She obtained her BSocSc. (Geography and Sociology) and MPhil (Geography) from the University of Hong Kong. Before pursuing a PhD in Durham University, she was a Research Assistant on a project on walkability which adopted integrated methods (survey, walking, computer and clinical tests), and on another project on the social impacts of day-tripping and movement of commodities at the Hong Kong-Mainland China border (by using business activity mapping and personal interviews). Her PhD supervisory team comprised geographers and anthropologists. Her PhD studies were partially funded by various funding sources, including departmental stipend, scholarships in Hong Kong and Global Citizenship Programme (GCP) Scholarship, and fieldwork supported by a scholarship awarded by Ustinov College. She had experiences of coordinating volunteering trips to Cambodia. Whilst at Ustinov College (2015-2018) she coordinated various academic and social events to create spaces for dialogue on issues such as identity, mobility, refugee and global citizenship. Her research interests include cultures, identities and practices; responsibilities and values; tourism and community (co-)development.

Diego Astorga de Ita obtained his BSc in Environmental Science and MSc in Biology from the Institute for Ecosystems and Sustainability Research (IIES) at the National Autonomous University of Mexico (UNAM). He has conducted research with Yucatec Maya peasant farmers looking at beekeeping within Maya landscapes and Maya culture. He has also researched traditional production systems in Oaxaca with the Centre of Studies for Change within the Mexican Countryside (CECCAM A.C.); a not-for-profit organisation that works with rural workers, responding to specific problems of these communities and trying to generate knowledge and change alongside farmers and producers. Diego is currently pursuing a PhD in Human Geography at Durham University funded by the Mexican National Council of Science and Technology (CONACYT). Throughout his doctoral studies Diego has also been a recipient of complementary scholarships from the Mexican Department of Public Education (SEP), Durham University’s Ustinov College, and Ustinov College’s Global Citizenship Programme. His current research looks at the co-production of Culture and Nature in the case of folk music in South-eastern Mexico and the historic landscapes of the region. Diego's fieldwork in this project has entailed living in Mexico for several months interviewing, playing with, and learning from traditional musicians and dancers in a politically complex part of the country. Besides this, throughout his academic career Diego has conducted fieldwork in several other places in Mexico, as well as in parts of Peru, France, and the USA.

Table of contents (13 chapters)

Table of contents (13 chapters)

Buy this book

eBook 64,19 €
price for India (gross)
  • ISBN 978-3-030-68113-5
  • Digitally watermarked, DRM-free
  • Included format: EPUB, PDF
  • ebooks can be used on all reading devices
  • Immediate eBook download after purchase
Softcover 74,99 €
price for India (gross)
  • ISBN 978-3-030-68112-8
  • Free shipping for individuals worldwide
  • Institutional customers should get in touch with their account manager
  • Covid-19 shipping restrictions
  • Usually ready to be dispatched within 3 to 5 business days, if in stock
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Bibliographic Information

Bibliographic Information
Book Title
Navigating the Field
Book Subtitle
Postgraduate Experiences in Social Research
Editors
  • Mildred Oiza Ajebon
  • Connie Y. M. Kwong
  • Diego Astorga de Ita
Copyright
2021
Publisher
Springer International Publishing
Copyright Holder
The Editor(s) (if applicable) and The Author(s), under exclusive license to Springer Nature Switzerland AG
eBook ISBN
978-3-030-68113-5
DOI
10.1007/978-3-030-68113-5
Softcover ISBN
978-3-030-68112-8
Edition Number
1
Number of Pages
XIX, 172
Number of Illustrations
1 b/w illustrations, 6 illustrations in colour
Topics