SEIS Academic Forum Series （No.760）
Forum on Intercultural Studies
Using Focus Groups in Intercultural Research?
Speaker: Fred Dervin
Time: 10:00 am-12:00 pm
Date: November 2nd, 2020
Venue: Tencent Online Meeting
(Conference code: 809120931, Password: 201102)
Abstract: Focus groups represent open-ended discussions which can allow researchers to explore a particular issue or a set of issues by having participants negotiate/create meanings and generate diversities as well as consensus of opinions. In focus groups, participants can interrupt each other, finish each other’s sentences, play roles, get angry, tell stories, jokes or even sing. Confrontation of ideas, polemics, multi-dialogues, but also unexpectedness can also occur. This makes focus groups very suitable for collecting data on the complex issue of interculturality, especially when conceptualized within the continuum of difference-similarity, complex sets of identity markers that go beyond ‘culture’ (e.g. gender, social class, generation, worldview/religion, ethnicity) and critiques of intercultural imaginaries and objectivizing knowledge about ‘us’ and ‘them’ (stereotypes, representations, categorizations). Prof. Dervin will provide examples of how to organize and analyze focus groups.
About the speaker: Fred Dervin is Professor of Multicultural Education at Faculty of Educational Sciences, University of Helsinki, Finland. Prof. Dervin specializes in intercultural education, the sociology of multiculturalism and student and academic mobility. He has widely published in international journals on identity, the 'intercultural' and mobility/migration (over 100 articles and 50 books). Dervin is one of the most influential scholars and critical voices on intercultural communication education in Europe.