Russell, Lisa and Barley, Ruth (2016) Ethics, Education and Ethnography; working with young people and children. In: Engaging Children and Young People: Creative Methods and Research Ethics, 20th - 21st June 2016, University of Huddersfield. (Unpublished)

Ethnography is one of the most responsive research methodologies and research products within educational research; it is also one of the most contested. There are continual debates about how educational ethnographies should be conducted and
presented (Walford, 2008). Not only does ethnography incorporate a wide array of methodologies, but educational ethnographers themselves are situated in the practical domain of the everyday life where the course of predicting ethically sound research practise is to some degree challenging. The ethnographer is forced to respond to the process itself rather than being situationally forged prior to its conduct (Dennis, 2010). This paper attempts to address the dearth in knowledge regarding the exploration of ethics and reflexive practise by exploring the work of two education ethnographers’ work with children and young people.
This paper argues that education ethnographers need to be reflexive in their consideration of ethics, especially when taking into account the variable fields of investigation, the close proximity to children and young people over a longitudinal
basis and the potential use of a plethora of research methodologies. Ethnography can be varied and unpredictable and as such have key unprecedented consequences for the use of ethics when working with children and young people.

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