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  • Author or Editor: Morten Bøås x
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This chapter examines violent contexts that equally represent specific challenges and threats to researchers and their collaborators and brokers. It offers a self-critical reflection on Morten Bøås’s research with local associates in the highly insecure context of the Sahel. It also reveals how researchers from the Global North may wittingly or unwittingly incentivize associates to adopt risky strategies. The chapter looks at the center of Bøås’s reflections, which includes the question of how friendship is shaped by the unequal power of relationships involved in North–South collaborations. It also describes the mixed bag of emotions experienced during fieldwork in a highly dangerous setting where researchers have more recently become the explicit target of some armed groups.

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A Guide to Research in Violent and Closed Contexts

Using detailed insights from those with first-hand experience of conducting research in areas of international intervention and conflict, this handbook provides essential practical guidance for researchers and students embarking on fieldwork in violent, repressive and closed contexts.

Contributors detail their own experiences from areas including the Congo, Sudan, Yemen, Bosnia and Herzegovina and Myanmar, inviting readers into their reflections on mistakes and hard-learned lessons. Divided into sections on issues of control and confusion, security and risk, distance and closeness and sex and sensitivity, they look at how to negotiate complex grey areas and raise important questions that intervention researchers need to consider before, during and after their time on the ground.

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This chapter covers experiences of doing fieldwork. It talks about a gender-balanced group of field researchers at different stages of their careers that work in different countries around the world. It also analyzes how the field researchers did their fieldwork in areas of international intervention into violent conflict and/or illiberal states. The chapter provides an overview of the frank and critical accounts of the field researchers who have taken the courage to publicly reflect upon some of their mistakes and to name the dilemmas of fieldwork in violent and closed contexts. It draws attention to the personal reflections of the field researchers’ practices, performances, and positionalities in the field, including their contributions to address questions currently discussed in related literatures.

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This chapter reviews themes that constitute ten points that all academics planning fieldwork-based research on international intervention should consider. It illustrates how even the most prepared or experienced researchers have struggled with the idea of control over the fieldwork-based research process in a closed or violent context. It also links to a broader emergent debate on researcher failure, which suggests that the perceptions of “failure” in research are not the exception but the rule. The chapter contributes to discussions of the dilemmas of balancing restrictive ethics and risk assessments of cautious universities with real risks and meaningful research in areas of international intervention. It tackles the dynamics of international organizations and actors as an integral element of challenges and dilemmas of distance and closeness.

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Using insights from those with first-hand experience of conducting research in areas of international intervention and conflict across the world, this book provides essential practical guidance, discussion of mistakes, key reflections and raises important questions for researchers and students embarking on fieldwork in violent and closed contexts. Chapters detail personal experiences from areas including the Congo, Sudan, Yemen, Bosnia and Herzegovina and Myanmar, inviting readers into their reflections on mistakes and hard-learned lessons. Divided into sections on issues of control and confusion, security and risk, distance and closeness and sex and sensitivity, the chapters look at how to negotiate complex grey areas and raise important questions that intervention researchers need to consider before, during and after their time on the ground.

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Using insights from those with first-hand experience of conducting research in areas of international intervention and conflict across the world, this book provides essential practical guidance, discussion of mistakes, key reflections and raises important questions for researchers and students embarking on fieldwork in violent and closed contexts. Chapters detail personal experiences from areas including the Congo, Sudan, Yemen, Bosnia and Herzegovina and Myanmar, inviting readers into their reflections on mistakes and hard-learned lessons. Divided into sections on issues of control and confusion, security and risk, distance and closeness and sex and sensitivity, the chapters look at how to negotiate complex grey areas and raise important questions that intervention researchers need to consider before, during and after their time on the ground.

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Using insights from those with first-hand experience of conducting research in areas of international intervention and conflict across the world, this book provides essential practical guidance, discussion of mistakes, key reflections and raises important questions for researchers and students embarking on fieldwork in violent and closed contexts. Chapters detail personal experiences from areas including the Congo, Sudan, Yemen, Bosnia and Herzegovina and Myanmar, inviting readers into their reflections on mistakes and hard-learned lessons. Divided into sections on issues of control and confusion, security and risk, distance and closeness and sex and sensitivity, the chapters look at how to negotiate complex grey areas and raise important questions that intervention researchers need to consider before, during and after their time on the ground.

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Using insights from those with first-hand experience of conducting research in areas of international intervention and conflict across the world, this book provides essential practical guidance, discussion of mistakes, key reflections and raises important questions for researchers and students embarking on fieldwork in violent and closed contexts. Chapters detail personal experiences from areas including the Congo, Sudan, Yemen, Bosnia and Herzegovina and Myanmar, inviting readers into their reflections on mistakes and hard-learned lessons. Divided into sections on issues of control and confusion, security and risk, distance and closeness and sex and sensitivity, the chapters look at how to negotiate complex grey areas and raise important questions that intervention researchers need to consider before, during and after their time on the ground.

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