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FQS Special Issue "Participatory Qualitative Research: What? Who? How? In Whose Interests?"


Jarg Bergold (Freie Universität Berlin, Germany)   

David Fryer (Charles Sturt University, Australia)  

Stefan Thomas (Freie Universität Berlin, Germany)  


Call for Papers 

In this Special Issue we hope to publish papers that illuminate philosophical, ethical, political, ideological and methodological issues peculiar to participatory qualitative research, through articulating them in relation to examples of substantive hands-on research. We do not wish to prescribe or proscribe issues which may be addressed but we are interested, amongst other issues, in questions such as: who participates, in which ways and decisions, on which occasions, in relation to which issues, with what effects, for whom and in whose interests in thoroughly participatory qualitative research? We are particularly interested in papers whose writing is a manifestation of participatory practices and papers which encourage readers to participate in the construction of knowledge. After all if, as BARTHES put it, "the death of the author is the birth of the reader", the death of the unitary researcher/knower may be the birth of the participatory researched/known? We encourage the submission of papers which engage with: progressive and problematic issues in relation to participatory research and "democracy"; the relevance to participatory research of notions of spatial and temporal context, power, sustainability and privacy. We also encourage submission of papers opening up space for critique of participatory research: for example whether the term "participatory research" is too frequently deployed to give pseudo-legitimation to exploitative practices which are more in the interests of the researcher than the researched? Finally we encourage papers discussing how the quality of qualitative research should be judged and by whom.

We invite you to indicate interest in submitting a full paper by first submitting a 250 word abstract or outline on which we will offer feedback as to the likely fit of the proposed paper, if developed, with the theme of this Special issue. Papers are welcome in English, German and Spanish; the abstract should be in English.


Important dates

  • 250 word abstracts: latest 15th March 2010
  • Full papers: 15th June 2010
  • Publication of special issue: 30th May 2011


Abstracts should be sent to: jarg.bergold@fu-berlin.de

Guidelines for authors can be accessed at: http://www.qualitative-research.net/index.php/fqs/about/submissions#authorGuidelines