Recent pieces on reflexivity and the role of emotions during fieldwork on this platform have made it abundantly clear that fieldwork in foreign countries can be very challenging and brings up multiple questions and dilemmas that researchers need to navitage. A recent contribution by Mohira Suyarkulova on the Central Asian context has extended the critical view on fieldwork by pointing out that, in order to counter extractive forms of knowledge production that serve to orientalise the region, fieldwork should be an engagement on an equal footing with subjects. Embracing such an approach, argued Suyarkulova, can help to inverse the usual hierarchies of academic research and make it an endeavour of emancipation and liberation.
In a recent workshop on ‘Cooperation between practice, social movements and academia’ during the Joint CESS-ESCAS conference in Bishkek, practitioners and academics from Central Asia and beyond discussed the potentials and limits of such cooperation. The event was based on the presentation of concrete case studies which drew on earlier initiatives on ‘activist research’ and publicly engaged anthropology and social sciences. These have not received due attention and are worth considering especially in the context of Central Eurasian studies. Continue reading Knowledge transfer, inspiration, (over-) reflection: A discussion of potentials and limits of cooperative research, by Philipp Lottholz and Tobias Marschall