In this course students will familiarize with surveys, semi-structured interviews and ethnographic methods, including their benefits and limitations. They will be presented with different examples of research relying on these methods in economic geography (and across the social sciences) and invited to think about the possibilities (and advantages) of mixing methods in their own research. Moreover, they will be introduced to questions, raised by critical and feminist scholars, around the relationship between researchers and their ‘object’ of study, the ethical implications of social science research and the need to consider the positionalities of the researchers through every stage of the research process.


Content of sessions

Session 1 (May 22nd, 16-19): The core principles of qualitative research, positionalities and situated knowledges

Session 2 (May 29th, 10-13): Surveys and semi-structured interviews

Session 3 (May 30th, 15-18): Surveys and semi-structured interviews

Session 4 (June 11th, 15-18): Qualitative data analysis


All the sessions will be held in room Fanfani (5th floor, Faculty of Economics, Economic History wing). 



Attendees are expected to have some knowledge of social science research basic concepts.



In preparation for each session, attendees will be provided with a detailed reading list and asked to prepare a formative assignment.

Starter readings:

Dyer, S. and Demeritt, D. (2009) Un-ethical review? Why it is wrong to apply the medical model of research governance to human geography. Progress in Human Geography, 33(1), 46-64.

Elwood, S. (2010) Mixed Methods: Thinking, Doing, and Asking in Multiple Ways. In: D. DeLyser et al., The Sage Handbook of Qualitative Geography, pp. 94-114. London: Sage.

England, K. V. (1994) Getting personal: Reflexivity, positionality, and feminist research. The Professional Geographer, 46(1), 80-89.

Rose, G. (1997) Situating knowledges: positionality, reflexivities and other tactics. Progress in Human Geography, 21(3), 305-320.

Watson, A. and Till, K. E. (2010) Ethnography and Participant Observation. In: D. DeLyser et al., The Sage Handbook of Qualitative Geography, pp. 121-137. London: Sage.


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