Reflexivity and Positionality Workshop

Recent writing across the social sciences have emphasized the importance of the positionality of the researcher in understanding observer bias and reflexivity in correcting for that bias.  

This online workshop will discuss the importance of the position and perspective of the researcher (that is, positionality) in designing, conducting, and writing up research based on the collection and analysis qualitative data – that is, a qualitative study Taking a hands-on approach, we will work with specific examples of how incorporating considerations of reflexivity and positionality into each of these three stages of research might be done. What are the advantages of doing so? The disadvantages? How do concerns about positionality relate or not relate to more traditional concepts of bias?

Participants will learn techniques for robustly engaging in reflexivity, for understanding positionality and for weaving reflexivity and positionality into different types of methodologies and fieldwork. The workshop uses both lectures and activities where participants engage with case studies and work to develop their own reflexive and positional skills. This workshop is appropriate as an introduction for scholars interested in developing ethically grounded reflexive approaches to research methods. Participants will complete the workshop with the basic skills to deploy reflexivity and positionality in scholarly research.

Instructor: Dr. Pardis Mahdavi

Pardis Mahdavi, PhD is currently Dean of Social Sciences and Director of the School for Social Transformation at Arizona State University. Before coming to Arizona, she was Acting Dean of the Korbel School of International Studies at the University of Denver (2017-2019), after spending eleven years at Pomona College from 2006-2017 where she most recently served as professor and chair of anthropology and director of the Pacific Basin Institute at Pomona College as well as Dean of Women. Her research interests include gendered labor, human trafficking, migration, sexuality, human rights, transnational feminism, and public health in the context of changing global and political structures. She has published four single authored books and one edited volume in addition to numerous journal and news articles. She has been a fellow at the Social Sciences Research Council, the American Council on Learned Societies, Google Ideas, and the Woodrow Wilson International Center for Scholars. In 2018 she was appointed by Colorado Governor John Hickenlooper and re-appointed by Governor Jared Polis to serve on the Colorado Commission on Higher Education.

Date: May 13, 2021

Time: 9:00am - 4:00pm with a lunch break from 12:00 - 1:00pm

This workshop will take place over Zoom and will incorporate hands on exercises

Workshop Fee: $50