Hate the Results? Blame the Methods: An Autoethnography of Contract Research

  • Will Thomas
  • Mirjam Southwell


This chapter presents an autoethnographic account of the experiences of the authors in preparing and presenting a piece of contract research. The work itself was commissioned by a local body engaged in the policy-formation process and the chapter offers a broad narrative recounting the experience of commissioning, conducting, and then presenting the research, with less than positive responses from the funders to the results shared. This autoethnographic account offers insight for researchers working on contract research projects: the authors’ conclusions are presented in the hope that they might help other researchers avoid similarly painful situations. The chapter also shows how the process of autoethnography can be used as part of a professional development or learning experience.


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Copyright information

© The Author(s) 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  • Will Thomas
    • 1
  • Mirjam Southwell
    • 2
  1. 1.University of SuffolkIpswichUK
  2. 2.Independent ResearcherIpswichUK

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