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Using ethnography to understand the lives of street sex workers

journal contribution
posted on 2023-02-10, 04:38 authored by Rebecca StockdaleRebecca Stockdale
This article examines the value of using ethnographic methodology in research with women involved in street sex work in an inner-city suburb of Melbourne, Australia. The aim is to draw attention to the importance of three fundamental elements of this type of research with marginalised populations: 1) researchers’ immersion into the field over a sustained period of time, 2) ethical considerations about informed consent for people with cognitive impairment as a result of chronic drug use, and 3) reflexivity and positionality in qualitative research. Data collected from two and a half years of ethnographic fieldwork, including participant observation and semi-structured interviews with women involved in street sex work, emphasises the importance of adopting these participatory methods to ensure authenticity, rigour and credibility of research findings with marginalised populations.

History

Journal

Qualitative Social Work

ISSN

1473-3250

eISSN

1741-3117

Language

English

Publication classification

C1 Refereed article in a scholarly journal

Publisher

SAGE PUBLICATIONS INC