Recent decades have seen an upsurge of research with and about young children, their families and communities. The Handbook of Early Childhood Research will provide a landmark overview of the field of early childhood research and will set an agenda for early childhood research into the future. It includes 31 chapters provided by internationally recognized experts in early childhood research. The team of international contributors apply their expertise to conceptual and methodological issues in research and to relevant fields of practice and policy. The Handbook recognizes the main contexts of early childhood research: home and family contexts; out-of-home contexts such as services for young children and their families; and broader societal contexts of that evoke risk for young children. The Handbook includes sections on: the field of early childhood research and its key contributions new theories and theoretical approaches in early childhood research collecting and analysing data applications of early childhood research This Handbook will become the valuable reference text for students, practitioners and researchers from across the social sciences and beyond who are engaged in research with young children.
Chapter 14: Conducting Ethnographic Research in Early Childhood Research: Questions of Participation
Conducting Ethnographic Research in Early Childhood Research: Questions of Participation
Ethnography is becoming the ‘new orthodoxy in childhood research’ (James, 2007: 246; Qvortrup, 2000). In this chapter we provide an overview of ethnography in early childhood research. We begin by providing some historical background to the development of ethnography and how the theoretical assumptions informing it sit with doing research with young children. We outline the underlying principles and provide examples of early childhood ethnographic studies, before embarking on a discussion of (1) ethnographic methods and research in practice, (2) the ethnographer's roles and the importance of reflexivity, and (3) questions of ethics, particularly informed consent. These three overlapping areas constitute some of ...