I am conducting a year-long comparative ethnography using descriptive/divergent type semi-structured interviews (SSI).
Sourcing - Participants will be located from publicly sourced published sources that indicate that the potential participant may correspond with defined criteria. Examples: NAISA, SAIC, AOTALM and other Indigenous conferences and professional organizations. University contacts and networks. Personal Tribal Network. Authorship. Government institutions etc. Recommendations of other participants that may result from direct contacts will also be pursued as potential participants through direct correspondence.
Protocol - as approved by my IRB.
COVID factor - I believe that conducting at least the initial interview in-person is critical to building trust and setting conditions for thoughtful, unrushed, and reflexive answers. This also increases authentic responses from the participants and allows for a broader range indexical communication. Further, the controlled access and transcribing of interview transcripts and the conduction of the interview by the researcher in person, rather than by indirect methods demanded by the current pandemic, is expected to decrease the perception that anyone else has access to individual responses. The participants must perceive that participating is a choice and is confidential. Increasing the perception of confidentiality is expected to decrease influenced responses that may be formed to satisfy a work supervisor or tribal expectation and increase the participants’ willingness to provide more authentic answers. Although I'm continuing my research using video chat tools, I am curious if anyone has insight into this challenge.
Data Products/Analysis. Each interview will be transcribed verbatim and coded. Following each interview, I will create an additional document that summarizes my impressions of the participant and the data provided in the interview. All documents and transcripts will be linked to a centralized spreadsheet that will provide an interviewee number and corresponding demographics.
All informed consent forms will be collected and stored in protected files. No participants will be asked to disclose personal data such as medical history or social security numbers, nor will they be asked to speak for their tribe. I will personally transcribe and code all interviews. All voice recordings will be recorded on my personal iphone and uploaded to the my password protected computer. Transcripts will also be stored on my password protected computer.
After the dissertation is complete, I will retain the transcripts for a period of two years so that they can be used for further analysis and publication after graduation. After two years I will make the transcripts available to other researchers should I be contacted with a request and provided the informant checked the box that they gave their consent.