Security guidelines for field research in complex, remote and hazardous places

Thea Hilhorst, L Hodgson, B (Bram) Jansen, Rodrigo Mena Fluhmann

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Abstract

These guidelines assist researchers in conducting their field-based research or fieldwork in hazardous, remote or complex environments as safely and securely as possible. Fieldwork comes with risks, ranging from the mundane risks of car accidents to more exceptional risks of encountering violence. These risks may affect the security of the researcher and the research outcomes, as well as the security of the respondents, local assistants and interpreters, the home and host organizations, and research sponsors. Taking into account the risk environment should be an integral part of the methodological and ethical choices researchers make. The first section of the publication deals with the particular security considerations posed by field-based research and suggests a set of ethical guidelines for field-based research. Section two is about field work and details how to conduct context analysis and risk assessment as well as how to plan and stay healthy during the course of field research. The final section is largely comprised of checklists and key considerations to assist researchers in managing their own personal security, both in terms of preventive and reactive measures.
Original languageEnglish
Place of PublicationThe Hague
PublisherInternational Institute of Social Studies (ISS)
Number of pages51
ISBN (Print)9789064900617
Publication statusPublished - 2016

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