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Dust, Distance and Discussion: Fieldwork Experiences from the Housing Improvement and Child Health Study

Kowal, Emma, Donohoe, Philip, Lonergan, Katrina, Ulamari, Harold and Bailie, Ross S. (2005). Dust, Distance and Discussion: Fieldwork Experiences from the Housing Improvement and Child Health Study. Environmental Health: The Journal of the Australian Institute of Environmental Health,5(3):59-72.

Document type: Journal Article
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IRMA ID 10005xPUB70
Title Dust, Distance and Discussion: Fieldwork Experiences from the Housing Improvement and Child Health Study
Author Kowal, Emma
Donohoe, Philip
Lonergan, Katrina
Ulamari, Harold
Bailie, Ross S.
Journal Name Environmental Health: The Journal of the Australian Institute of Environmental Health
Publication Date 2005
Volume Number 5
Issue Number 3
ISSN 1832-3367   (check CDU catalogue  open catalogue search in new window)
Start Page 59
End Page 72
Total Pages 14
Place of Publication Australia
Publisher Environmental Health Australia, Inc.
Field of Research 0502 - Environmental Science and Management
0699 - Other Biological Sciences
1199 - Other Medical and Health Sciences
HERDC Category C1 - Journal Article (DEST)
Abstract The poor state of Indigenous health is in part attributable to poor housing and household environments. The Housing Improvements and Child Health study is a large research project that aims to improve understanding of the relationship between the household environment and child health in remote Indigenous communities, particularly the impact of improved housing stock. The collection of remote community household data for research purposes presents a number of challenges. This paper relates our experiences in this area. We discuss issues of survey design, including language, pilot testing, and innovations in the assessment of household function and condition. We then consider the processes of engaging remote communities in the study and administration of the surveys, including informed consent, the effect of researcher characteristics on data collection, confidentiality and the process of feeding back survey findings to community stakeholders. We conclude with a discussion of the critical lessons from our fieldwork experience. In discussing these issues, we aim to promote discussion of the challenges of working in remote Indigenous communities, and ultimately to improve fieldwork practice and the quality and use of research data in improving living conditions in remote communities.
Keywords Indigenous
Aboriginal
Housing
Data collection
Child health
Environment health
Additional Notes This article has been extracted from Environmental Health: The Journal of the Australian Institute of Environmental Health, Vol.5, No.3, 2005.
Description for Link Link to published version
URL http://www.eh.org.au/documents/item/85


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