Journal article

Research solidarity? Navigating feminist ethics in participatory action-research in Kathmandu, Nepal

Stephanie Butcher

Gender Place & Culture | Informa UK Limited | Published : 2020


This article looks reflexively at the experience of PhD fieldwork—undertaken internationally, in partnership with a locally-based organization, and with informal settlement residents— which was shaped both by a feminist research ethic, as well as by the principles of participatory action-research. It examines the notion of ‘solidarity’, seeking to understand the contradictions and challenges of embedding research into action. To do so, it examines three sets of relationships within the fieldwork that challenged solidarity: with the city-wide organization; with the neighbourhood-based grassroots group; and with residents that were ‘excluded’ from the community organization. By reflecting on t..

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Funding Acknowledgements

I would like to acknowledge the UK Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council, together with the INGO Practical Action for supporting the PhD work which informed this article. In addition, I am grateful to all of the locally based organizations in Kathmandu which I worked in partnership with. Many thanks to Alex Frediani and Julian Walker, and for the long guidance from the Development Planning Unit, UCL. Finally, to the three anonymous reviewers for their insightful feedback.