On Tuesday 3rd November 2020, the Following Young Fathers Further team gave an invited keynote presentation for the Covid Realities research study webinar called ‘Interviewing at a distance: reflections on navigating practical, emotional, and methodological challenges’. The webinar was chaired by Prof. Jane Millar and also included talks by Dr. David Robertshaw of the Welfare at a (Social) Distance project and Aimi King who is conducting a PhD about parent and toddler groups hosted by churches.
The presentation was an opportunity for us as a team to reflect on our experiences of planning for and conducting online and telephone interviews with young fathers and professionals who provide support to them. We focused in particular on issues of connection and connectivity; how do we establish and maintain connections with participants in a crisis context (and one characterised by social distancing requirements) while also managing the challenges that arise in terms of connectivity i.e. the kinds of technology that we use and that are (in)accessible, both to researchers and participants.? Our ethical considerations have cohered around a range of issues. In the presentation we specifically consider:
- adapting different forms of interviewing with different participant groups (young fathers and professionals across the health and social care landscape),
- the positives afforded by interviewing at a distance,
- issues concerning digital and data exclusion (connectivity),
- Building and sustaining connections with participants (including those we already knew and new participants), and
- questions of democratisation in researcher/researched relationships.
If you are interested in hearing more about our work, please have a look at the recording of the presentation, which is available below:
Over the past six months, qualitative researchers have had little choice but to try to change and adapt our usual methods; switching new and existing researc…
The webinar prompted lots of questions and we note that we were asked some really important and reflective questions at the event, some of which we were unable to address directly at the time. We are therefore going to write a blog with our responses for the Covid Realities website to enable ongoing dialogue. Please watch the Covid Realities blog space, and ours, and do get in touch with the team on Twitter (@FollowingYFF) or via email to continue the conversations!