Program Research Day 2020

Law and Development Virtual Research Day : Research ethics in practice

29 May 2020, 9h20 -12h10 with Starleaf

Program in pdf

9h20 –9h30: Welcome

9h30 –10h30: Interactive discussion 1: Doing research with vulnerable groups and on sensitive topics

Ruben Wissing(PhD candidate UGent) will share his first-hand experience from fieldwork in Morocco, where he worked with refugees, asylum seekers, undocumented migrants and other vulnerable persons. He will talk about how researchers can be considerate of the vulnerability of these individuals and groups, and how they can try to ensure their well-being. This is especially urgent in more challenging national contexts, where human rights guarantees are less effective and authorities are not equally restricted by the rule of law. However, researchers might underestimate the impact of research in such contexts has on him-or herself.

Yordan Nugrah(PhD candidate UHasselt) will talk about the cultural challenge faced by researchers trying to build networks with (legal)scholars (in this case in Indonesia and Russia) that are needed to gain insights and input for research, as well as about the cultural challenge faced when communicating the results of the research to the wider public in these countries where the topic of the research is contested and sensitive.

Prof. Stephan Parmentier (KULeuven) will moderate the discussion.

10h30-11h00: Coffeebreak

11h00-12h00: Interactive discussion 2: Decolonizing knowledge and overt research

Dan Kashironge (PhD candidate VUB) will talk about his interdisciplinary research methodology, and how that allowed himto go beyond the realm of law and consider notably African social/philosophical studies so as to understand what would be the African understanding of the law at hand in a particular social context. He posits that decolonizing (legal) knowledge is based on the assumption that the former “colonizer” had/has no monopoly of knowledge, therefore a researcher working on former colonies, should understand the approach that the former “colonized” would have taken in addressing the issue/problem that the former attempted to solve through law. This is with the view of reconciling the two approaches in the quest for a development that is sustainable.

Ellen Van Damme (PhD candidate KU Leuven) will discuss the tension between ethics in theory and ethics in practice, along the continuum of overt and covert field research. She argues that complete overt research is not only unfeasible, but can even be dangerous or harmful to the people as well as theresearch and the researcher

Prof. Stefaan Smis (VUB) will moderate the discussion.

12h00-12h10: Closing remarks by Prof. Wouter Vandenhole (UAntwerpen)

Afternoon: (Optional) Breakout sessions on one of the four topics with the presenters