What is researcher Positionality?

What is researcher Positionality?

Positionality implies that the social-historical-political location of a researcher influences their orientations, i.e., that they are not separate from the social processes they study. It also influences the importance given to, the extent of belief in, and their understanding of the concept of positionality.

What does reflexivity imply to researchers?

“Reflexivity” is generally understood as awareness of the influence the researcher has on the people or topic being studied, while simultaneously recognizing how the research experience is affecting the researcher (Gilgun, 2008).

What is a reflexivity statement in research?

Reflexivity is about acknowledging your role in the research. Researcher reflexivity is a type of critical reflection about the position you are taking as a researcher and how you have taken this stance into account in your research.

Why is reflexivity important in research?

Reflexivity is really important in qualitative research because there are so many ways in which researcher bias could affect the study, from the creation of data gathering tools, to collecting the data, analysing it and reporting it. Understanding these effects can be an important part of the research process.

Why is it important to be aware of Positionality?

Positionality is an important consideration in action research because it not only directly influences how the research is carried out but also determines the prevailing outcomes and results—whose voice(s) will be represented in the final reports or decisions.

What is the difference between Positionality and reflexivity?

Reflexivity generally refers to the examination of one’s own beliefs, judgments and practices during the research process and how these may have influenced the research. If positionality refers to what we know and believe then reflexivity is about what we do with this knowledge.

What is an example of reflexivity?

At the simplest level, a relationship is reflexive if the relationship is self-referring (i.e. one part of the relational statement reflects the other), for example, ‘the tower is as tall as itself’. At a second level, reflexivity refers to the process of reflecting on rather than just reflecting.

How do you show reflexivity in research?


  1. Situate the research question into larger frameworks.
  2. Situate the local context into larger contexts.
  3. Situate the research approach within other approaches and research “camps.”
  4. Situate specific procedures within larger sets of assumptions and practices.

What is the importance of researcher reflexivity and positionality?

The essay will then discuss the impact of reflexivity and positionality by using a case study example. The essay will end with some concluding thoughts on the importance of maintaining as objective a stance as possible in any research process. Fawcett and Hearn (2004) state that reflexivity in the research of ‘others’ is an essential component.

How to identify and develop your positionality as a researcher?

Savin-Baden & Major (2013) identify three primary ways that a researcher may identify and develop their positionality. Firstly, locating themselves about the subject, i.e., acknowledging personal positions that have the potential to influence the research. Secondly, locating themselves about the

What’s the difference between reflection and reflexivity in research?

Reflection and reflexivity are sometimes used synonymously, but Alvesson and Sköldberg (2009: 8) distinguish between them, conceiving ‘reflexive empirical research … as a particular, specified version of reflective research, involving reflection on several levels or directed at several themes’.

Which is more fluid, reflexivity or fluid positionality?

By being reflexive, we become attentive to interpretations and decision making along the research process. We become attuned to our thoughts, feelings and what is creating them. To me, reflexivity is a more fluid and recurrent practice.