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Accessing the Community: Gaining Insider Perspectives From the Outside

Accessing the Community: Gaining Insider Perspectives From the Outside Accessing participants for research projects is often treated as unproblematic. However the experience outlined here of negotiating access to participants within a community setting illustrates the inherent difficulties of recruitment. The authors describe the techniques used and practical challenges faced when accessing participants within a socially deprived community for a qualitative research project on social capital. They used a number of different strategies to generate a diverse sample including advertising, snowballing, accessing gatekeepers, and street surveys. The value of a stakeholder analysis is described alongside issues surrounding the use of gatekeepers. Rather than acting as outsiders seeking participants at every available opportunity, a more fortuitous strategy involved the ethnographic approach of “being there” as active contributors to community life. Here, the cornerstones of credibility and trust were addressed in a process of continually negotiating access from a semi-insider position. http://www.deepdyve.com/assets/images/DeepDyve-Logo-lg.png Qualitative Health Research SAGE

Accessing the Community: Gaining Insider Perspectives From the Outside

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References (24)

Publisher
SAGE
Copyright
Copyright © by SAGE Publications
ISSN
1049-7323
eISSN
1552-7557
DOI
10.1177/1049732302250759
pmid
12703418
Publisher site
See Article on Publisher Site

Abstract

Accessing participants for research projects is often treated as unproblematic. However the experience outlined here of negotiating access to participants within a community setting illustrates the inherent difficulties of recruitment. The authors describe the techniques used and practical challenges faced when accessing participants within a socially deprived community for a qualitative research project on social capital. They used a number of different strategies to generate a diverse sample including advertising, snowballing, accessing gatekeepers, and street surveys. The value of a stakeholder analysis is described alongside issues surrounding the use of gatekeepers. Rather than acting as outsiders seeking participants at every available opportunity, a more fortuitous strategy involved the ethnographic approach of “being there” as active contributors to community life. Here, the cornerstones of credibility and trust were addressed in a process of continually negotiating access from a semi-insider position.

Journal

Qualitative Health ResearchSAGE

Published: Apr 1, 2003

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