Post by Mary Bosworth, co-Director of Border Criminologies and Director of the Centre for Criminology at the University of Oxford. Mary tweets @MFBosworth. This is the first installment of Border Criminologies’ themed series on how research changes over time, organised by Mary. 

This week and next we are running a series of ‘From the Field’ Blog posts. These kinds of posts are designed for researchers to share their experiences, however messy, of applied research. In this particular collection, we reflect on how research changes over time. We start with Liz Kullman, who begins with an account of her experience of conducting research in prison for the very first time. Next up Alice Gerlach reflects on the challenges of fitting in fieldwork as an early career lecturer and mother of one-year old twins. Samuel Singler, rounds out the first week, by considering some of the benefits and challenges empirical research poses for conceptual understandings of border control.

Next week, Andriani Fili will begin, with a discussion of her (often painful) experiences of conducting research inside immigration detention centres in Greece. Variously employed by NGOs and as an academic researcher, while also completing her doctorate, Andriani examines the impact of these roles on her experience and understanding of these institutions. The final two posts, by Mary Bosworth and Alison Liebling discuss some of the challenges and pleasures of conducting long-term research. While Mary focuses on some of the difficulties of balancing her role as a researcher with other demands of her academic post, Alison pays attention to the impact of the changing nature of the prison on her work.

‘From the field’ posts like these offer an intimate and unguarded account of empirical work. In so doing, authors seek to demystify some of the academic labour that is usually hidden in our published accounts. We are always interested in running first accounts like these, so please do contact us if you would like to contribute an account of your research experiences to the blog.

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How to cite this blog post (Harvard style) 

Bosworth, M. (2019) Themed Fortnight: From the Field, Over Time. Available at: https://www.law.ox.ac.uk/research-subject-groups/centre-criminology/centreborder-criminologies/blog/2019/10/themed-fortnight (Accessed [date])