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Seminar: Addressing issues of ethnocentrism in research

On June 18th, the Work and Equality Institute at the University of Manchester is organising a seminar on “Tackling contemporary research challenges in uncertain times: Addressing issues surrounding the ethnocentrism of research”. The seminar will take place from 1-3pm.

You can register here.

The Work and Equalities Institute is pleased to announce an online seminar series open to all Postgraduate Researchers (PGR). The ‘Tackling contemporary research challenges in uncertain times’ series will discuss different challenges associated with research practice, including methodological and contextual issues facing researchers. This series aims to interrogate the dynamics and practices of  research about work and inequalities., The series aims to provide them with some of the tools needed to address and overcome these issues. Our speakers will share their top tips on a variety of topics and will reflect on the different methodological tools they employed throughout their careers.

The session “Addressing issues surrounding the ethnocentrism of research” will be held on 18th June from 1pm to 3:00 pm. Dr Jenny Rodrigues (AMBS), Dr Sadhvi Dar (QML) and Professor Anders Neergaard (Linköping University) will be discussing their experiences, practices and understandings of ethnocentrism in research. This session aims to address the ethnocentrism of contemporary research, dealing with issues such as Experiences of otherness in research, both as the role of the researcher as well as the way in which findings and issues are translated to accommodate knowledge to fit dominant paradigms. Hereby losing the voices and knowledge presented by other places and people. The problem that needs to be resolved with dominant theory from “the West”, and how doctoral students deal with the tensions this poses.

Firstly, this session looks to consider our positionality as researchers, and how experiences of otherness may shape our research process and identities within the field of study. For example, how we research with people and how that interplays with our own identities.

Secondly, this session aims to tackle inherent biases that erase critical and minority perspectives in research. For example, it has been reported by “international” students that they are discouraged from using literature produced in their own language that has not been translated to English. It is important to understand the implications of this for what is considered legitimate knowledge and ultimately what is erased by not allowing those works to participate in the intellectual/academic dialogue created by a doctoral project.

Thirdly, this session investigates the use of radical methods in research that look to decentre or fracture dominant paradigms. For example, decolonizing methods “theorising beyond the global north” prompting us to consider their potential, their limitations and the tensions that emerge from their adoption. It will also aim to consider the use of “non-traditional” methodologies (e.g. storytelling, co-production, oral history, visual methods) and how they can be incorporated when researching business school topics. These methods may propose an alternative which sit within the dominant paradigm, whereas the former areas explored aim to disrupt them. Both approaches are helpful to consider and this session will aim to provide space to discuss these in more depth.

We will be collecting questions before the session on this Google Doc.