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Fieldwork after Conflict: Contextualising the Challenges of Access and Data Quality

Roll, K. & Swenson, G. (2018). Fieldwork after Conflict: Contextualising the Challenges of Access and Data Quality. Disasters, 43(2), pp. 240-260. doi: 10.1111/disa.12321


Despite sustained scholarly interest in post‐conflict states, there has not been a thorough review and analysis of associated methodology and the challenges of conducting research in these contexts. Addressing this gap, this paper directs attention to the particular effects of these settings on access and data quality and their ramifications for the resulting scholarship. It assesses the intrinsic challenges of performing fieldwork in these environments, drawing on both relevant social science literature and the authors’ experiences of carrying out research in Afghanistan and Timor‐Leste. The study demonstrates that the post‐conflict environment moulds research design and, consequently, influences how questions are answered as well as the questions asked. Moreover, it highlights ways to mitigate these issues. This work is of relevance to scholars planning to engage in field research and to researchers reflecting upon their work, as well as to policymakers who are considering undertaking programmes or commissioning research in post‐conflict areas.

Publication Type: Article
Additional Information: This is the peer reviewed version of the following article: Roll, K. and Swenson, G. (2018), Fieldwork after conflict: contextualising the challenges of access and data quality. Disasters, which is published in final form at This article may be used for non-commercial purposes in accordance with Wiley Terms and Conditions for Use of Self-Archived Versions.
Subjects: J Political Science > JZ International relations
Departments: School of Policy & Global Affairs > International Politics
SWORD Depositor:
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