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Using life history research as part of a mixed methods strategy to explore resilience in conflict and post conflict settings

Kate Bird


This paper presents the approach taken by an international and interdisciplinary team to research the role of education in supporting livelihood resilience in conflict and insecurity affected northern Uganda. The paper has a methodological focus. It presents an overview of the analytical framework and the qualitative research methods component of the Q?squared approach used in this study, which iteratively combined and sequenced quantitative and qualitative methods. The paper also presents illustrative results and discusses the contribution that they made to our understanding of the role that education plays in supporting resilience. It outlines the advantages of using qualitative methods in exploring dynamic changes in well?being. It also discusses the challenges implicit in this type of research. For instance, resilience is complex and multifaceted. Also, while education is important in supporting resilience both during and following conflict and insecurity, this research did not explain as much as we would like about either causality or the counterfactual. Further, economic measures of resilience are difficult to assess due to the outward migration of many of the most educated from the conflict zone; the long?run impacts of asset loss on livelihoods, income and food security; impacts on investments in human capital and cultural norms and the fragmentation of key markets. This may mean that the role of education in supporting resilience is either over? or underestimated.


Publication Type(s)

Conference Paper

Ten Years of War Against Poverty Conference Papers

Conference: Ten Years of War Against Poverty


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