Straddling between Different Worlds: Navigating Diverse Fieldwork Modes

Straddling between Different Worlds: Navigating Diverse Fieldwork Modes

By Iqra Anugrah, Kyoto University

Fieldwork often is seen as a challenging and misunderstood intellectual enterprise. Long perceived as the domain of the few, fieldwork and immersion continue to be the chosen methodological techniques for many political scientists. Focusing on my own fieldwork experience in Indonesia since 2015 as an early-career researcher, I discuss and reflect on three types of activities: (1) policy research, (2) dissertation research, and (3) activist work. In particular, I highlight fieldwork serendipities, fieldwork logistics, and my experience in gathering data and interacting with various interlocutors. It is hoped that this self-reflection will help readers to better understand the relationship between researchers and their interlocutors and collaborators, demystify the fieldwork process, and better prepare political scientists who use fieldwork in their research.

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