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WICID Methods Lab Toolkit Series

WICID Methods Lab produces toolkits to help develop new methodological approaches to research and impact. Our toolkits are hosted by the University of Warwick Press and can be accessed here. If you are interested in contributing to the Toolkit Series, please see the guidelines for authors here.

Published Toolkits

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Toolkit for Integrating a Gender-Sensitive Approach into Research and Checklist for Preparing the Gender Equality Statement for Grant Applications to UKRI GCRF and Newton Fund Calls

Gender equality has been highlighted as key to accomplishing the Sustainable Development Goals, but gender analysis is often missing and misunderstood in research. As men and women have distinct roles and responsibilities, their experiences and perspectives on issues can be quite different. It is important to note, however, that men and women are not homogenous categories – differences of class, race, sexuality etc. intersect with gender to produce complex perspectives among groups. Thus, gender needs to be mainstreamed into every component of research in complex ways: identification of a problem; conceptual framework; methodology; implementation; and analysis and interpretation of the result (Callamard, 1999).

The aim of this Toolkit is to help researchers to gain a better understanding of how to mainstream gender into their research from the initial phase of constructing research questions and/or hypotheses to the concluding phase of data compilation, analysis and reporting. It also provides a practical checklist on how to prepare the Gender Equality Statement for inclusion in grant applications.

Feminist Everyday Observatory Tool 

Studying labour/time is an important research area, which allows us to make sense of the rhythms of everyday life of people in different contexts and societies. It is also a complex task that address the result of the research question, which inquires how and why people spend their time on social reproduction. Answering this question requires a systematic methodology involving both qualitative and quantitative research methods. In this Toolkit we make the argument for bringing two important methodologies that study the everyday – Time-Use Surveys and Shadowing – to develop an a Feminist Everyday Observatory Tool.

We discuss the strengths of Time-use Survey and Shadowing as methodologies and show where the gaps lie in their design and how to address these. We then introduce a Three Step Method that we have developed through trialling this methodology in four pilot studies – in India, Ukraine, Myanmar and Sri Lanka. We examine the challenges that our Feminist Everyday Observatory Tool method poses for researchers as well as its advantages and suggest that it is an important contribution to the methodological toolkit for researchers of the everyday and of gender structures of time, space, violence and social reproduction.

Building Success in Development and Peacebuilding by Caring for Carers

The experiences and marginalisation of international organisation employees with caring responsibilities has a direct negative impact on the type of security and justice being built in conflict-affected environments. This is in large part because international organisations fail to respond to the needs of those with caring responsibilities, which leads to their early departure from the field, and negatively affects their work while in post. In this toolkit we describe this problem, the exacerbating factors, and challenges to overcoming it. We offer a theory of change demonstrating how caring for carers can both improve the working conditions of employees of international organisations as well as the effectiveness, inclusivity and responsiveness of peace and justice interventions. This is important because it raises awareness among employers in the sector of the severity of the problem and its consequences. We also offer a guide for employers for how to take the caring responsibilities of their employees into account when developing human resource policies and practices, designing working conditions and planning interventions. Finally, we underscore the importance of conducting research on the gendered impacts of the marginalisation of employees with caring responsibilities, not least because of the breadth and depth of resultant individual, organisational and sectoral harms.

Appreciative Inquiry: Change Based on What Goes Well

Appreciative Inquiry (AI) was initially developed as a research method, aimed at generative theory-building and inquiry. However, over time people started using AI for organisational change. AI is a process of discovery, aimed at building change based on the strengths of an existing team or organisation. There are five principles that underpin AI: 1) constructionist principle; words create worlds, 2) simultaneity principle; inquiry creates change, 3) anticipatory principle; image inspires action, 4) poetic principle; what we focus on grows and 5) positivity principle; positive questions lead to positive change. AI consists of five distinctive steps, the 5-D cycle. Steps include: 1) definition, 2) discovery, 3) dream, 4) design and 5) destiny. This toolkit explains the underlying principles and the 5-D cycle, and presents potential questions that can be asked during each step of the 5D-Cylce. Finally, this toolkit shares some examples of how AI has been used in hospitals in India and the tourism sector in Nepal.