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Living Multiculture

The new geographies of ethnicity and the changing formations of multiculture in England

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Methods

World Picnic Day in Milton Keynes

Our methodology is carefully designed to access and investigate the ordinary, small-scale interactions that take place on a daily basis.  Focusing on the emotional dimensions of research, our aim is to explore how multiculture and place is perceived, felt and experienced. To do this, we aim to build on our experience of ethnographic methods that require openness, engagement and critical reflection. Ultimately, our mixed methods approach is guided by a desire to listen better, and is structured around the following core methods:

  1. Participant Observation - members of the research team are spending lots of time in the different areas, just getting to know the localities and places and attempting to observe, experience and describe multicultural encounters as they happen and take place in the various research settings. Processes of observation inform both the individual interviews and the in-depth discussion groups, with the aim being to develop an in-depth understanding of the interactions that take place in particular spaces and, ultimately, to produce a richly detailed account of lived multiculture in situ.
  2. Semi-structured individual interviews – these are being conducted with participants drawn from everyday who different connections to a particular research settings, whether it is a college, park, café or social leisure clubs. The aim is to explore the biographies and geographical and multicultural experiences of participants and begin to identify themes that can be explored in more detail in the in-depth discussion groups.
  3. Repeat, in-depth discussion group interviews - participants in the individual interviews each then take part in a series of in-depth discussion group interviews that meet up to three times to focus on i) place and locality and belonging; ii) experiences and encounters of mixing and difference iii) feelings and reflections on place, diversity, change and attachment. The in-depth discussion group interviews are each made up of the seven people and the aim is to enable participants to establish trust and connection within the group in order to better collectively explore experiences and perceptions between those who live in the area and use the same spaces and resources.

Latest Blog entries

  • It is has often felt like a winter of argument, contestation and crisis around migration and multiculture.

  • Rather unbelievably we are in the final weeks of Living multiculture being a ‘live project’.

  • A quick update on the various activities on the Living Multiculture project: we are deep in the data ‘cleaning’ and coding process still.

Contact us

For further information about the project, questions, queries and media enquiries, please contact Prof Allan Cochrane or a member of the project team.