Journal article Open Access
Glas, Aarie; Soedirgo, Jessica
Although both qualitative and quantitative scholars have begun to recognize that researcher positionality is consequential for social research, many have yet to theorize fully about the practical realities of doing reflexivity in the field. Positionality refers to the demographic characteristics and personal backgrounds of a researcher’s identity and their impact on interactions with research participants (Fujii 2017, 17). How, then, should scholars go about reflecting on the complexities of positionality during field research? As junior scholars, Lee Ann Fujii’s research and mentorship prompted us to confront this question often. Her work on political violence and interpretive methods make clear that positionality is context-specific and fluid. Because positionality is particular to every context, the effects of a researcher’s social location are never straightforward or static.