Policy Embodied: An Ethnographic Pursuit of Everyday Risks in Kampala

  • Serena Cruz


This chapter relays a detailed personalized telling of how to ethnographically explore HIV policies and programs from a grounded theoretical research standpoint. The position taken in the chapter is that by engaging with policy directly—vis-à-vis the daily lives of those targeted for social reforms—programs, interventions, and the science underpinning these policy endeavors can be better supported and more meaningfully understood for those investing in these reforms as well as for those intending to benefit from these policies. From the outset, the chapter discloses the challenges of taking up grounded research that is ethnographically shaped to delve deeply into highly ‘at-risk’ lives. Readers grasp the difficulties, as well as the solutions, to exploring survival and vulnerability among ‘hard-to-reach’ populations. Descriptive accounts of developing and executing an in-depth methodology become anchored by ancillary policy-relevant knowledge that bridges testimony with theory. In managing to be evocative of both risk and methods, and policy and praxis, this chapter lends itself to giving readers a chance to engage, directly, with how to do ethnography that is policy relevant.


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Copyright information

© The Author(s) 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  • Serena Cruz
    • 1
  1. 1.Amsterdam Research Center for Gender & Sexuality (ARC-GS)University of AmsterdamAmsterdamNetherlands

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