Studying Transnational Children: A Multi-sited, Longitudinal, Ethnographic Approach


Punch S (2012) Studying Transnational Children: A Multi-sited, Longitudinal, Ethnographic Approach. Journal of Ethnic and Migration Studies, 38 (6), pp. 1007-1023.

This paper explores the methodological challenges of doing research with transnational children. It outlines a range of strategies that researchers might employ, whilst also reflecting on the issues that such strategies raise. It argues that an ethnographic approach, combining interviews with participant observation, can enable a fuller understanding of the wider implications of the specific local context, at both the sender and the destination communities. Ethnographic research can lead to a more holistic exploration of children's everyday lives as transnational migrants, by exploring different arenas of their daily lives and not just concentrating on their work or education. This paper considers the methodological and practical aspects involved in seeking multiple perspectives of transnational migration. It is based on a longitudinal ethnographic study of Bolivian children's experiences of migration in Argentina.

children; methods; ethnography; longitudinal; migration; transnational; child migrant; fieldwork

Funded by the British Academy

Journal of Ethnic and Migration Studies: Volume 38, Issue 6

Publication date31/07/2012
PublisherTaylor and Francis