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Access, ethics and the (re)construction of gender: the case of researcher as suspected 'paedophile'

Scourfield, Jonathan Bryn ORCID: and Coffey, Amanda Jane ORCID: 2006. Access, ethics and the (re)construction of gender: the case of researcher as suspected 'paedophile'. International Journal of Social Research Methodology 9 (1) , pp. 29-40. 10.1080/13645570500436122

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This paper presents an account of an access encounter, and uses this case to reinforce the potential for access meetings to provide a rich source of ethnographic data. The paper originates from one of the authors' experience of negotiating research access in a UK local authority social services department. In response to a summary research proposal sent in advance that expressed interest in social work with men, a gatekeeper expressed his concern during an initial meeting that the author might be a ‘paedophile’ wanting to make contact with others of a similar persuasion. This encounter, and the issue of sexual abuse that it introduced, highlights a number of ethical, epistemological and gendered tensions for ethnographic work, which this paper attempts to negotiate. Some of the potential implications of this specific access meeting are discussed, and set within broader methodological and empirical contexts.

Item Type: Article
Date Type: Publication
Status: Published
Schools: Social Sciences (Includes Criminology and Education)
Subjects: H Social Sciences > H Social Sciences (General)
H Social Sciences > HQ The family. Marriage. Woman
H Social Sciences > HV Social pathology. Social and public welfare
Publisher: Routledge
ISSN: 1364-5579
Last Modified: 25 Oct 2022 08:40

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