TRAFIG methodological workshop in Italy: meet the Italian team

The preparation of the European part of the TRAFIG fieldwork started with a workshop held in Torino, Italy on 21-22 October 2019. The workshop was organised and hosted by the Forum of International and European Research on Immigration (FIERI) – leader of TRAFIG Work Package 6, which investigates protracted displacement in Europe. The whole FIERI team involved in the TRAFIG project participated in the workshop together with the project coordinator Benjamin Etzold from BICC (Germany). In addition, Panos Hatziprokopiou and Eva Papatzani from the Aristotle University of Thessaloniki (Greece) – the other WP6 partner – participated via Skype on the first day of the workshop.

The workshop started with an introductory presentation by Benjamin Etzold on the general aspects and conceptual premises of the project. An update on the progress of fieldwork in countries in the Middle East/Asia and Africa followed the introduction. Ferruccio Pastore presented a methodological note prepared by the FIERI team for WP6, a plan for the Italian fieldwork and some preliminary reflections on how this could coordinate with fieldwork in Greece and Germany. Participants had a lively discussion on the overall scientific goals and overarching research questions of the project, and the need to adapt the general TRAFIG methodology to the European and national contexts. Part of the workshop was devoted to an in-depth analysis of different research tools, and to discussing methodological issues and ethical challenges that researchers may face in the field.

The TRAFIG workshop in Torino was a great opportunity to develop the overarching TRAFIG research design further. The team was able to adapt the TRAFIG research questions, methodological tools, interview forms and fieldwork plans to the European context in a joint effort involving the Italian, Greek and German partners. Having finalised the methodological aspects, the Italian team is now ready to go to the field and start what promises to be an amazing research! The Italian TRAFIG team is an interdisciplinary group of scholars with different backgrounds (sociology, anthropology, political science and law). The team members bring in long-standing expertise in conducting qualitative research with forced migrants across Italy and in other European countries. The TRAFIG research will certainly benefit from the differentiated skills and disciplinary approaches characterising the Italian team.

Participants of the FIERI workshop

The members of the Italian team are:

  • back row in the picture: Irene Ponzo and Ferruccio Pastore, Deputy Director and Director of FIERI, respectively; and
  • front row in the picture, from the left to the right: Giuseppe Grimaldi (Frontiera Sud, FIERI), Emanuela Roman (FIERI), Milena Belloni (University of Trento, FIERI) and Pietro Cingolani (FIERI, University of Torino) – in this picture together with Benjamin Etzold (in the middle).

By Emanuela Roman, FIERI

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