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Author: Sally Vivyan

This article explores the use of interviews as a tool for relationship development in the context of conducting mixed methods qualitative research during the 2020 COVID-19 pandemic in the UK. It demonstrates that beyond being a source of data, interviews can be instrumental in opening doors to hard to reach informants and can form bridges between phases of fieldwork. This article draws on my PhD project which is looking at a single case study charity working with asylum seekers and refugees. The research is being undertaken through the view of a leadership-as-practice lens but the implications for how we view interviews may be of relevance to a wide range of mixed methods qualitative research. In particular, researchers whose work requires them to gain and maintain access may benefit from a more explicit consideration of the normally implicit ways interviews are used as tools in research.

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