Autoethnography as a research method

O'Shea, Saoirse (2021). Autoethnography as a research method. In: Stead, Valerie; Elliott, Carole and Mavin, Sharon eds. Handbook of Research Methods on Gender and Management. Cheltenham: Edward Elgar Publishing.

Abstract

In this chapter I will discuss how and why autoethnography is a suitable method for those interested in academic research where gender studies overlaps with management. In doing so I provide a brief history of ethnography before discussing autoethnography. I discuss the main features of autoethnography as a qualitative method and discuss recent academic work in gender and management studies that have used autoethnographic method. I provide two vignettes as examples of autoethnography that both illustrate and reflect on points raised in this chapter. I critically reflect on how this method both opens up a space for women and minority gender voices but may also restrict what stories may be told. I conclude with suggestions for how autoethnography may develop further as a method suited to gender and management research.

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