Presentation is loading. Please wait.

Presentation is loading. Please wait.

Bridging Communities in Sex Work Research Elizabeth Anne Wood Michael Goodyear Society for the Scientific Study of Sexuality St Petersburg, Florida June.

Similar presentations


Presentation on theme: "Bridging Communities in Sex Work Research Elizabeth Anne Wood Michael Goodyear Society for the Scientific Study of Sexuality St Petersburg, Florida June."— Presentation transcript:

1 Bridging Communities in Sex Work Research Elizabeth Anne Wood Michael Goodyear Society for the Scientific Study of Sexuality St Petersburg, Florida June

2 Elizabeth Anne Wood Sociology Nassau Community College, NY

3 Michael Goodyear Medicine Dalhousie University, Nova Scotia Research Ethics, Capital District Health Authority

4 DISCLOSURE

5 Elizabeth

6 Michael X Chromosomally Challenged

7 Learning objectives I Understand why sex workers distrust and lie to researchers Understand why sex workers distrust and lie to researchers Understand how research and the research agenda harms sex workers Understand how research and the research agenda harms sex workers Propose ways to repair damaged trust Propose ways to repair damaged trust Understand ethical issues in sex work research and how to navigate them to produce research of high ethical and scientific quality Understand ethical issues in sex work research and how to navigate them to produce research of high ethical and scientific quality

8 Learning objectives II Use examples of collaborative and problematic research in order to suggest ways of improving problematic studies Use examples of collaborative and problematic research in order to suggest ways of improving problematic studies

9 Learning objectives III Participatory activities Roleplay an escort negotiating with a difficult researcher Roleplay an escort negotiating with a difficult researcher Roleplay a pro domme negotiating with a difficult client Roleplay a pro domme negotiating with a difficult client Perform a passable pole dance. Perform a passable pole dance. Become a better ally or sex worker researcher Become a better ally or sex worker researcher If you can stay awake long enough!

10 Audience input Your learning objectives Your learning objectives What disciplines/backgrounds represented? What disciplines/backgrounds represented? Who has performed sex work research? Who has performed sex work research? Is planning to? Is planning to? Your experiences? Your experiences? Sex work experience? Sex work experience?

11 Brief overview Why we do research Why we do research Research design Research design Research dissemination Research dissemination Responding to research Responding to research Discussion Discussion – ethics – ways of knowing – funding dilemmas New directions for sex work research New directions for sex work research

12 Why do we do research? The pursuit of knowledge

13 “The aim of science is not to open a door to infinite wisdom but to set a limit to infinite error” Brecht B. The Life of Galileo (Leben des Galilei) 1943 Bertolt Brecht (1898 –1956)

14 Why we do research Academic advancement Academic advancement Professional reputation Professional reputation Funding agencies Funding agencies Government priorities Government priorities - How does the Research Agenda construct ‘social problems’ - How does the Research Agenda construct ‘social problems’

15 Issues The Research Agenda The Research Agenda –highly politicised* –ethical implications largely overlooked –sex workers mistrust and resist researchers “living off the backs of sex workers” *Kempner J (2008) The Chilling effect: How Do Researchers React to Controversy? PLoS Med 5(11): e222

16 Ethical principle I Respect for Persons (Autonomy) “act as to treat humanity…in every case as an end..never as a means” Kant I: Groundwork of the metaphysics of morals (1785)

17 Ethical principle II Distributive justice Distributive justice –Burdens of research must be distributed fairly –Research cannot be performed on one population for the benefit of another Aristotle: Nicomachean Ethics

18 Sex Workers’ Experiences with Researchers & Problematic Research

19 The Internet: A blessing and a curse I’m a labor economist researching the escort market and got your off the internet. I’m hoping to collect some field evidence from current or former workers in this profession. I’m a labor economist researching the escort market and got your off the internet. I’m hoping to collect some field evidence from current or former workers in this profession. Any feedback that you could give would be great, and will of course be kept completely confidential and used for research purposes only. 1. Do you still provide escort or companionship services? a. I’m still active. b. No, I’m no longer active.

20 The Internet: A blessing and a curse Greetings, You have been randomly selected to participate in a survey by the Criminal Justice Department at (…..University). This is a study designed to understand the ways that you use technology, including computers and the Internet in the course of your profession and day to day lives. …This study will also ask questions addressing when you first began to use the Internet in the course of your job and your reasons for using websites, such as the Escort Blogs as a means to communicate with clients and other providers. … Greetings, You have been randomly selected to participate in a survey by the Criminal Justice Department at (…..University). This is a study designed to understand the ways that you use technology, including computers and the Internet in the course of your profession and day to day lives. …This study will also ask questions addressing when you first began to use the Internet in the course of your job and your reasons for using websites, such as the Escort Blogs as a means to communicate with clients and other providers. …

21 Sex Worker Research on Researcher When the escort who sent us the followed the researcher’s link she found a research agenda that included: computer crime, the role that technology and the Internet play in crime and deviance... the behaviour of “sexual deviants” on-line…has published research on the use of the internet by clients…. computer crime, the role that technology and the Internet play in crime and deviance... the behaviour of “sexual deviants” on-line…has published research on the use of the internet by clients…. And that the researcher collaborates: with law enforcement… to understand the technological and social elements of computer crime. with law enforcement… to understand the technological and social elements of computer crime.

22 Big Brothel - A Survey of the off-street sex industry in London. Poppy Project, August 2008

23 Revealed: the truth about brothels A survey into London's off-street sex industry has exposed just how widespread it is - and documents in disturbing detail the plight of the women trapped in it. Julie Bindel Wednesday 10 September 2008

24 Friday 3 October 2008 Big Brothel research 'seriously flawed' Poppy Project research into sex workers "was based on flawed data" and "cannot be substantiated“ Anthea Lipsett

25 AN ACADEMIC RESPONSE TO “BIG BROTHEL” Dr Teela Sanders, University of Leeds, Jane Pitcher, Independent Researcher, Rosie Campbell, Chair, UK Network of Sex Work Projects & Loughborough University, Dr Belinda Brooks-Gordon, Birbeck College, University of London, Dr Maggie O’Neill, Loughborough University, Dr Jo Phoenix, Durham University, Professor Phil Hubbard, Loughborough University, Mary Whowell, Loughborough University, Dr Nick Mai, London Metropolitan University, Dr Linda Cusick, University of the West of Scotland,Dr Tracey Sagar, Swansea University, Kate Hardy, Queen Mary, University of London, Dr Ron Roberts, Kingston University, Jane Scoular, Strathclyde University, Professor Graham Scambler, University College London, Hilary Kinnell, Author, “Violence & Sex Work in Britain” (2008), Dr Petra Boynton, University College London, Justin Gaffney, Clinical Specialist, Sohoboyz, Dr Elizabeth Wood, Nassau Community College, Dr Michael Goodyear, Dalhousie University, Professor Ron Weitzer, George Washington University, Dr Jackie West, Bristol University, Dr Helen Self, Author “Prostitution, Women & Misuse of the Law” (2003), Dr Hera Cook, University of Birmingham, Dr Sophie Day, Goldsmiths College, London, Dr Helen Ward, Imperial College, London, Tiggey May, Institute for Criminal Policy Research, King's College, London

26 Researchers’ responsibilities Ethical principle III Beneficence Beneficence –Research must benefit the subjects of research Mill JS: Utilitarianism (1863)

27 Issues in Research Design Participation of the community is key Participation of the community is key Nothing About Us Without Us

28 International Conference on Prostitution Los Angeles, 1997 Recommendations on Research Ethics South Australian Sex Industry Network* 1.Collaboration 2.Equality 3.Dissemination 4.Independence *Wahab and Sloan: Ethical dilemmas in sex work research. Research for Sex Work (7) 2004

29 1. Collaboration Researchers must collaborate with the sex workers they seek to study This collaboration must include all aspects of research design, theoretical framework, methods, and dissemination As cited In: Wahab and Sloan: Ethical dilemmas in sex work research. Research for Sex Work (7) 2004

30 Researchers must be cognisant of issues of social, political, economic and personal power and seek to equalise power relationships with the sex workers they study This can be accomplished by acknowledging that sex workers are the experts on their own lives; researchers are the experts on research methods, and we all stand to learn from one another As cited In: Wahab and Sloan: Ethical dilemmas in sex work research. Research for Sex Work (7) Equality

31 3. Dissemination Researchers must bring the results back to the sex workers they study to ensure that the researchers’ interpretation of the data is accurate As cited In: Wahab and Sloan: Ethical dilemmas in sex work research. Research for Sex Work (7) 2004

32 Sex workers and sex work organisations are encouraged to hire their own researchers to conduct research of relevance to sex workers. Or, sex workers and sex work organisations are encouraged to obtain training or consultation that would enable them to conduct their own research. 4. Independence As cited In: Wahab and Sloan: Ethical dilemmas in sex work research. Research for Sex Work (7) 2004

33 Collaboration requires trust Work with community based organizations Work with community based organizations –Learn their needs –Demonstrate your own commitment –Be willing to commit significant time and effort –(NOTE: This is not simply about entrée)

34 Collaboration requires trust Read sex worker blogs and comment where appropriate. Read sex worker blogs and comment where appropriate. –By listening you learn the language and the issues –By commenting reveal your perspective and your willingness to learn reveal your perspective and your willingness to learn reveal what you have to offer reveal what you have to offer

35 Collaborative Models

36 Participatory Action Research WALSALL PROSTITUTION CONSULTATION RESEARCH (UK) O’Neill and Campbell 2004

37 MAKA Project (Vancouver, BC) In the fall of 2004, the MAKA Project, a partnership with the BC Centre for Excellence in HIV/AIDS, undertook a study to assess the health needs of the women who use the Drop-In Centre at WISH.BC Centre for Excellence in HIV/AIDS

38 Non-malevolence (do no harm) Ethical principle IV Anticipating potential harm (“Think harm”) Anticipating potential harm (“Think harm”) – Stigmatisation – Outing – Use of research for other purposes (Utilitarianism)

39 Taxonomy – Avoiding conflation Highly stratified activity Highly stratified activity Overlapping categories Overlapping categories Generalisations Generalisations Terminology e.g. Sex Worker Terminology e.g. Sex Worker –Definitions –Categories –Identity

40 Using an umbrella term to refer to a subcategory Conflating iv drug use and sex work -Unintended results of research : McInnes et al 2009

41 HIV/AIDS in Vancouver, British Columbia: a growing epidemic McInnes CW, Druyts E, Harvard SS, Gilbert M, Tyndall MW, Lima VD, Wood E, Montaner JS, Hogg RS. Harm Reduct J Mar 5;6:5 The study referred to in previous alarming headline – the focus was NOT sex work - see also: Readers’ Comments, for example of responding to potentially misleading research

42 Essentialism (Ontology) Confusing behaviour with identity Confusing behaviour with identity –“I am not my job” Evidence vs Belief Evidence vs Belief Defining subject of research Defining subject of research

43 Barriers to research How do barriers shape nature of research? Funding Funding Research ethics oversight Research ethics oversight –Confidentiality –Safety –Consent –Bringing issues to IRBs –Alternative models: community-academic partnership (eg CARAS) Attacks on researchers Attacks on researchers

44 Dissemination Who owns the data? Who owns the data? Community rights to access Community rights to access –Data –Interpretation –Communication strategy Whose interests? Whose interests? –Subjects –Broader community Necessary a priori design elements, addressed by collaborative model

45 Media Media training Media training –Journalistic ethics –Media agenda –Soundbites –Avoiding nuance –Clear message –Getting feedback

46 Learning from Sex Workers: Media Training Sex Work Awareness designed a media training workshop, Speak Up!, for sex workers and has made those materials available online

47 Responsiveness Researchers build trust when they actively respond to other people’s research: Positioning studies and reports Positioning studies and reports Critical appraisal Critical appraisal Addressing implications for community Addressing implications for community Responding at multiple levels: academic, mainstream press, blogs/websites, social media. Responding at multiple levels: academic, mainstream press, blogs/websites, social media.

48 Sex In The Public Square post about the feminist academic response to Big Brothel

49 Questions for Discussion I Researchers agenda & responsibilities Researchers agenda & responsibilities Community agenda & responsibilities Community agenda & responsibilities Considerations Considerations Beneficence Beneficence Engagement Engagement Collaboration Collaboration

50 Questions for Discussion II Managing conflicting values Managing conflicting values –Duty to subjects v society –Researchers v Subjects interests –Applied v Theoretical research –Concept of expert (researcher, subject)

51 Questions for Discussion III Epistemology (Ways of Knowing) Epistemology (Ways of Knowing) –Theoretical, Empirical, Experiential –Privileging of positions –Blurring of occupations: Sex worker researchers Sex worker researchers Degrees of outness, subjectivity Degrees of outness, subjectivity

52 Questions for Discussion IV Funding and the agenda Funding and the agenda –Whose responsibility to shift priorities –Resistance –Organisation Political agenda Political agenda –Lessons from infiltration of State and Justice Departments – eg PEPFAR –Working with the new Administration

53 Questions for Discussion V Framing and re-framing the agenda Framing and re-framing the agenda –Health –Women and Girls –Rights and Discrimination Human, Civil, Women, Labour Human, Civil, Women, Labour –Constitutionality –Sexual expression –Global responsibilities

54 Questions for Discussion VI Framing and reframing the agenda cont’d Framing and reframing the agenda cont’d –Crime, Violence Prohibition Prohibition War on Drugs War on Drugs

55 New Directions for Research I Balancing Micro, Meso and Macro factors Balancing Micro, Meso and Macro factors –Political, Social and Economic factors Emphasising structural factors Emphasising structural factors Push and Pull drivers Push and Pull drivers Social citizenship and responsibilisation Social citizenship and responsibilisation –Social inclusion and exclusion

56 New Directions for Research II Organisation factors Organisation factors –Moral panic and moral crusades Holistic examination of sex work in relation to sexuality and commerce Holistic examination of sex work in relation to sexuality and commerce –Balanced examination of actors and sectors –How controls are applied discriminately

57 New Directions for Research III Societal benefits Societal benefits –Economic –Sexual needs of specific groups –Health promotion –Therapists Vulnerability and the disadvantaged Vulnerability and the disadvantaged –Societal effects of discrimination against groups

58 Summary I Historically sex work research has made a number of false steps through failure to engage the sex work community Historically sex work research has made a number of false steps through failure to engage the sex work community Collaborative research provides opportunities to produce more meaningful results that benefit both sex workers and society Collaborative research provides opportunities to produce more meaningful results that benefit both sex workers and society

59 Summary II Principles of Good Sex Work Research Principles of Good Sex Work Research –To benefit sex workers –To influence the research agenda –To engage the sex work community –To ensure responsible collaborative dissemination of results –To apply results constructively –To critically respond to studies and reports that are harmful, misrepresented or misleading

60 Additional resources Bound not Gagged, the blog for Desiree Alliance Community Academic Consortium for Research on Alternative Sexualities (CARAS) Desiree Alliance

61 Additional Resources II Michael Goodyear’s sex work research resource page Research for Sex Work, an annual journal

62 Contact Information Elizabeth Anne Wood Elizabeth Anne Wood –http://sexinthepublicsquare.org Michael Goodyear Michael Goodyear –http://myweb.dal.ca/mgoodyea/goodyear.html


Download ppt "Bridging Communities in Sex Work Research Elizabeth Anne Wood Michael Goodyear Society for the Scientific Study of Sexuality St Petersburg, Florida June."

Similar presentations


Ads by Google