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Rift Valley Institute

Making local knowledge work

Training course in Somaliland on fieldwork methodology

In January, RVI organised a five-day training course in the University of Hargeysa in Somaliland, for Somali researchers, on social science research methodologies. The course brought together researchers from Hargeysa, Burco, Borama, Garowe and Mogadishu involved in RVI research projects in Somaliland, Puntland and south central Somalia. They were joined by staff from the University of Hargeysa, OVCP (the Observatory for Conflict and Violence Prevention), and the Academy for Peace and Development. Thanks to Dr Abdi Gas from the University and Abdullahi Odowa from the OCVP for their support in hosting the course. 

The course was facilitated by Dr Cindy Horst of the Peace Research Institute in Oslo (PRIO) and Judy el Bushra. It was intended to prepare researchers to conduct fieldwork using qualitative data collection. Participants learned about research design, data collection and recording, and the analysis and presentation of data. There was extensive discussion of the ethical challenges of doing research and the gendered aspects of research and analysis. The course did not lay down a standard approach, but offered participants the opportunity to reflect upon the dilemmas and challenges in fieldwork and how to make informed decisions regarding their research.

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