A reflexive note on studying older migrants: Experiences from a qualitative fieldwork

Activiteit: Academic presentationAcademic


In qualitative research, there are several ethical and methodological challenges ranging from recruitment issues to involving others such as gatekeepers. These issues may be even more challenging on research on older migrants. Northwestern-Europe has an ageing migrant population, yet research on older migrants is sparse. Older migrants are a hard to reach population as there are challenges such as distrust, and cultural and language barriers. For outsider researchers who have different identity markers compared to the study participants, additional challenges may arise during qualitative fieldwork. In this presentation I therefore reflect on my qualitative fieldwork of a study on the social wellbeing of older Turkish migrants living in the Northern Netherlands. I describe my experiences during interviews and participant observations of activities in a community center and a mosque. During these activities, I recruited participants for the interviews. To earn the trust of participants, it seemed important to refrain from repeatedly asking for translation and to regularly join activities over a longer period of time. The dependence on gatekeepers in the fieldwork created ethical dilemmas with regard voluntary participation and informed consent. I also describe differences in fieldwork experiences of a native Dutch researcher and Turkish researchers.
EvenementstitelNPSO Innovation Day
LocatieNetherlandsToon op kaart