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Showing posts from December, 2010

Are we still chasing the flame? A few reflections after reading Sergio Vieira de Mello’s biography

My last post for this year will be in line with the reflective end-of-the-year mood rather than engaging with an ongoing debate. I enjoyed reading Samantha Power’s biography of Vieira de Mello and it made me think about two bigger issues that have been part of my research work and that also interest me beyond academic endeavours: First, the book is a vivid example of how the UN transformed from a small, political and 'neutral' organisation into a participant of the global aid industry and became part of the transnational work- and lifestyle – and how little the UN seem to have engaged in these transformations. The other issue is that Vieira de Mello’s career and his duty stations are good/sad examples of how difficult, slow and interlocked peacebuilding challenges are. Practically all of the countries he has worked in throughout his career are still struggling with (the aftermath of) violent conflict and civil war – which often happened years or even decades ago – and that man…

Great article: Autoethnography-An Overview

I'm a big fan of FQS, the Forum for Qualitative Social Research:

FQS is a peer-reviewed multilingual online journal for qualitative research established in 1999.
FQS is interested in empirical studies conducted using qualitative methods, and in contributions that deal with the theory, methodology and application of qualitative research. Innovative ways of thinking, writing, researching and presenting are especially welcome.The current issue features an excellent introduction and (literature) review of 'autoethnography':

Autoethnography: An Overview

Carolyn Ellis, Tony E. Adams & Arthur P. Bochner

Autoethnography is an approach to research and writing that seeks to describe and systematically analyze personal experience in order to understand cultural experience. This approach challenges canonical ways of doing research and representing others and treats research as a political, socially-just and socially-conscious act. A researcher uses tenets of autobiography and …