Social Science Research Methods

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Blog entry

Written by: Pru Hobson-West

How do publics talk about or reflect on animal research? Can animal research be considered part of everyday life? How can researchers use archives to understand engagement with sensitive topics?

Written by: Pru Hobson-West

On 5th March 2019 I attended a fantastic workshop, organised by the Leverhulme Trust funded Interspecies Connectedness project at the Univers

Written by: Vanessa Ashall

Working within a multidisciplinary research environment provides every member of the AnNex team with unique opportunities to think outside the boundaries of their own discipline and benefit from exposure to the methods and perspectives of other hu

Written by: Sara Peres

Our approach to research emphasises cross-project collaborations and transdisciplinary thinking. But what does this mean, in practical terms, for the work that we do and for our participants?

Publications

The Mass Observation Project is in the care of the University of Sussex and based at The Keep in Brighton. It represents a unique repository of rich textual accounts which span the breadth of ‘everyday life’. These accounts are produced by the MOP’s voluntary correspondents, who are referred to as ‘Mass Observers’, and whose writings are guided by ‘Directives’ which entail a set of questions or prompts on a particular topic.

In Summer 2016, the University of Nottingham commissioned the first Directive on animal research, and analysis has now begun. In June 2019 Renelle McGlacken and Pru Hobson-West co-organised a workshop to critically consider some of the larger conceptual and methodological themes raised by the use of Mass Observation as a research tool, particularly (but not exclusively) when researching animals and interspecies relations.

We are delighted to share our report of the workshop and would welcome any feedback. Please feel free to share the report with your colleagues and wider networks.

This report provides a record of the discussions at a workshop which brought together lay members from across the biomedical research sector to discuss the opportunities and challenges of shaping biomedical research.

In our experience so far, one aspect of working collaboratively is that tacit assumptions about academic working practices need to be made explicit. This report aims to highlight our working assumptions about the topic of publication ethics.

This paper draws on ethnographic work with laboratory animal technologists to offer insights into the skills required to study human–animal relations and the role played by storytelling in negotiating the contested moral economies of animal research.