Division ChairSara Niedzwiecki, University of California, Santa Cruz

Practitioner Reflections on Bayesian Reasoning for Qualitative Research

Wednesday, September 9, 2:00pm MDT (Wednesday, September 9, 4:00pm EDT)

This roundtable panel invites prominent practitioners of qualitative research from different subfields of the discipline to reflect on Fairfield & Charman’s (2017, 2019, forthcoming) Bayesian approach to inference. 

Andrew Bennett, Georgetown University (Chair)

Kenneth M. Roberts, Cornell University

Margaret M. Pearson, University of Maryland

Lauren M. MacLean, Indiana University, Bloomington

Saadia M. Pekkanen, University of Washington

Stephan Haggard, University of California, San Diego

Tasha A. Fairfield, London School of Economics


Challenges in Qualitative Data Collection and Analysis

Thu, September 10, 8:00 to 9:30am MDT (10:00 to 11:30am EDT), TBA

This panel studies different challenges in the process of qualitative data collection and analysis. These challenges span from transparency and replication, to creating our own data and sexual harassment in the field.

Chair: Juan Diego Prieto Sanabria, Universidad de los Andes

Colin Elman, Syracuse University, Diana Kapiszewski, Georgetown University, and Robert M Demgenski, Syracuse University, “Verifying Qualitative Research.”

Jeffrey T. Checkel, European University Institute, “Research Transparency and Open Science: Can We Have Too Much of a Good Thing?”

Stacey Leigh Hunt, Auburn University, ”Challenges to Field Research: Sexual Harassment and Assault.”

Tranae Hardy, Georgetown University and Diana Kapiszewski, Georgetown University, “Trends and Evolution in the Conduct of Political Science Research.”

Discussant: Jennifer Marie Cyr, University of Arizona


Shared Goals, Diverse Approaches: Methodological Pluralism in Labor Studies

Thu, September 10, 12:00 to 1:30pm MDT (2:00 to 3:30pm EDT)

Chair: Ian M. Hartshorn, University of Nevada, Reno

Biko Koenig, Franklin & Marshall College, “Unions, Work, & Labor from Ethnographic & Interpretive Perspectives.”

Ian M. Hartshorn, University of Nevada, Reno, “Archival Research in Labor Politics: A New Golden Age?”

Katerina Manevska, Radboud University, Agnes Akkerman, Bram Geurkink, Roderick Sluiter, Radboud University Nijmegen, and Antonia Stanojevic, “Worker Voice to Political Voice: Quantitative Evidence from the Netherlands.”

Discussant: Laura C. Bucci, Saint Joseph's University


Poster Session: Qualitative and Multi-Method Research

Thu, September 10, 12:30 to 1:00pm MDT (2:30 to 3:00pm EDT)

Stephanie Dornschneider, University College Dublin and Johan A. Elkink, University College Dublin,

“Fear and Protest: Analyzing Emotions in Arabic Ethnographic Interviews.”

Ewan Alexander MacDonald, Technological University Dublin, Brendan K. O'Rourke, Dublin Institute of Technology, and John W. Hogan, Technological University Dublin, “Imagining the Future in Budgets 1970-2015: A Mixed-methods Discourse Analysis.”

Xiaoyuan LI (潇远 栗), Fudan University, Poverty Alleviation without Claiming: Perspective on Cadre's Interaction in China.

Discussants: Annette Iris Idler, University of Oxford/Harvard University and Abhishek Chatterjee, University of Montana


Rethinking Africa, Eurasia & the West: Regions, States & Comparative Area Studies

Thu, September 10, 2:00 to 3:30pm MDT (4:00 to 5:30pm EDT)

Chair: Rudra Sil, University of Pennsylvania

Rudra Sil, University of Pennsylvania and Allison D. Evans, University of Nevada, Reno, “How Issue-Specific, Cross-Regional Studies Serve Single-Case Analysis.”

Matthias Basedau, GIGA German Institute of Global and Area Studies, “The Case for Comparative African Studies (CAfS)”

Fatih Umit Cetin, University of Massachusetts Amherst and Amel F. Ahmed, University of Massachusetts, Amherst, “A “Commensurability” Question? The USA in Comparative Area Studies Perspective.”

Sebnem Gumuscu, Middlebury College, “Why Democracies Collapse: Turkey, South Africa, and Comparative Area Studies.”

Discussant: Nora Fisher Onar, University of San Francisco


Fieldwork in Political Science 1: Ethnography's Home in the Field

Fri, September 11, 8:00 to 9:30am MDT (10:00 to 11:30am EDT)

Given the widespread applicability of ethnography across established research programs in political science, this roundtable explores two interrelated questions, 1. How can political ethnography encourage a more reflexive, self-aware and therefore more insightful discipline? And 2. How do political ethnographers situate themselves within their respective fields, both methodologically and through fieldwork? Political ethnography has been defined as being at once an immersive methodology while also cultivating a sensibility (Schatz 2008). This roundtable brings together political ethnographers from multiple stages in their careers to discuss issues around how to conduct research using immersive, interpretive and embedded methodologies to understand political processes and movements. We seek to ascertain and cultivate new methodological insights into the growing repertoire of scholarship employing diverse ethnographic methods, including participant observations, structured and semi-structured interviews, collaborative ethnography, critical ethnography and decolonial methodologies that come to bear on the political.

Nicholas Rush Smith, CUNY-City College (Chair)

Tani H Sebro, Humboldt State University

Osman Balkan, Swarthmore College

Nicole Sunday Grove

Sarah Marie Wiebe, University of Hawai'i, Manoa


Fieldwork in Political Science 2. Reflections on Ethnographic Methods.

Fri, September 11, 10:00 to 11:30am MDT (12:00 to 1:30pm EDT)

Chair: Günes Murat Tezcur, University of Central Florida

Aarie Glas, Northern Illinois University, “Power, Positionality, and Positions of Power: Reflexivity in Elite Interviewing.”

Andres Besserer Rayas, The Graduate Center, City University of New York, and Robert Courtney Smith, Marxe School of Public and International Affairs, Baruch College, and Sociology, Grad Center, CUNY, “Political Ethnography and the Erosion to Liberal Norms: An Agenda.”

Mariana Borges Martins da Silva, Oxford University, “Making Concepts Meaningful: A Practice-Based Approach to Concept Formation.”

Emmanuelle Reungoat, Université de MONTPELLIER-CEPEL, François Buton, National center for scientific research (CNRS France), and Cecile Jouhanneau, University Paul Valery Montpellier, “A Renewal of Protest. Observing the Yellow Vests through the Biographical Lens.”

Discussant: Lauren M. MacLean, Indiana University, Bloomington


Fieldwork in Political Science 3: Tracing Trends and Forging the Future

Fri, September 11, 12:00 to 1:30pm MDT (2:00 to 3:30pm EDT)

Field research plays an important role in political science, with scholars across subfields and epistemological approaches traveling to various sites “to acquire data, information, or insights that significantly inform one’s research” (Kapiszewski, MacLean, and Read 2015, 1). Over the last decade, political scientists have been increasingly engaged in vital discussion about the principles, practices, challenges, and benefits of engaging in fieldwork (Hsueh, Jensenius, and Newsome 2014). This roundtable aims to energize and expand that ongoing discussion. Each participant will also address aspects of “democracy, difference and disruption” to link their fieldwork with this year’s conference theme.

Deborah L. Wheeler, U.S. Naval Academy (Chair)

Susan L. Ostermann, University of Notre Dame

Justine Davis, University of California, Berkeley

Diana Kapiszewski, Georgetown University

Roselyn Hsueh, Temple University

Robin L. Turner, Butler University

Nicholas Rush Smith, CUNY-City College

Erica S. Simmons, University of Wisconsin, Madison


Fieldwork in Political Science 4. Stories from the Field.

Fri, September 11, 2:00 to 3:30pm MDT (4:00 to 5:30pm EDT)

When groups of political scientists get together, we often find ourselves sharing stories about our research experiences – the stories we tell our students, friends and colleagues, of the kind we perhaps wish someone had shared with us before we embarked on field research for the first time. After one such conversation, we found ourselves thinking: someone should really be writing this stuff down. And so, we decided to do just that. The result is Stories from the Field: A Guide to Navigating Field Research in Political Science, a collection of stories, insights, and advice about field research from 44 political scientists from a range of backgrounds and subfields, with a wide range of geographic and theoretical expertise. The book will be published with Columbia University Press in the summer of 2020. The purpose of this roundtable is to further the conversation begun in this book. 

Jesse Driscoll, University of California, San Diego

Ora B. Szekely, Clark University

Peter Krause, Boston College

Christina M. Greer, Fordham University

Ian S. Lustick, University of Pennsylvania


Process Tracing. New Directions in Qualitative Research

Sat, September 12, 8:00 to 9:30am MDT (10:00 to 11:30am EDT)

Chair: Megan Turnbull, University of Georgia

Jason Seawright, Northwestern University and Kendra L. Koivu, University of New Mexico, “Can Statistics and Experimental Designs Help Process Tracing?”

Tasha A. Fairfield, London School of Economics and Andrew Charman, University of California, Berkeley, “Rethinking Van Evera’s Tests in a Probabilistic Framework.”

Mathilde Cecchini, Aarhus University and Derek Beach, University of Aarhus, “Bringing Back the Social: Interpretivism and Social Process Tracing.”

Rosa Willemijn Runhardt, Leiden University, “Concrete Counterfactual Tests for Process-tracing.”

Discussant: Jeffrey T. Checkel, European University Institute


Mixing Experiments and Qualitative Methods

Sat, September 12, 12:00 to 1:30pm MDT (2:00 to 3:30pm EDT)

Chair: Soo Yeon Kim, National University of Singapore

Abigail Fisher Williamson, Trinity College, Sarah S. Willen, University of Connecticut and Colleen C. Walsh, Cleveland State University, “From Interviews to Survey Experiments: Innovating Flexible Coding Approaches.”

Andrew Charman, University of California, Berkeley and Tasha A. Fairfield, London School of Economics, “How We Learn from both Observational and Experimental Research.”

Daniel Encinas, Northwestern University, “Redesigning Experimental Inquiry in Political Science: A Qualitative Approach.”

Derek Beach, University of Aarhus and Levente Littvay, Central European University Foundation, “What Makes an Experiment Good - Using Process Tracing to Improve Experiments.”

Discussant: Jason Seawright, Northwestern University