Family lives and the environment: Negotiating meanings and practices in India and the UK, 2011-2015

Boddy, Janet and Phoenix, Ann and Walker, Catherine (2017). Family lives and the environment: Negotiating meanings and practices in India and the UK, 2011-2015. [Data Collection]. Colchester, Essex: UK Data Archive. 10.5255/UKDA-SN-852492

The Family Lives and the Environment project (PI: Janet Boddy) was funded as part of the National Centre for Research Methods NOVELLA Node (www.novella.ac.uk) (PI: Ann Phoenix) and included a linked PhD studentship (Catherine Walker). The overall aim of the study was to improve understanding of the diversity and negotiated complexity of families’ lives in relationship with their environments, with regard to the meanings of ‘environment’ in everyday family lives and family practices. After a first stage of secondary analysis of eight family case studies drawn from the qualitative subsample of the Young Lives study in Andhra Pradesh/Telangana (www.younglives.org.uk), the second stage of the research involved new data collection with 24 families with diverse economic, social, cultural and demographic profiles in India (Andhra Pradesh/Telangana) and in the UK (southern England). The research involved a volunteer sample of families, recruited through school Years 7 and 8 (children aged 11-14), selecting schools in urban and rural locations and on the basis of school characteristics (including state/government and fee-paying schools in both countries). The NOVELLA NCRM research node as a whole was concerned with the everyday habitual practices of families. These are frequently taken for granted. Since people’s understanding of what they do (their everyday practices) is not necessarily what they actually do, it might seem that what they say is of little interest to policymakers and practitioners. Yet, 'disconnections' between people's understanding and action tells us about their identities, values and possible future actions. Family practices are of particular interest since orientation to the social world and what people do are negotiated within families.

Data description (abstract)

The Family Lives and the Environment project was funded as part of the National Centre for Research Methods NOVELLA Node (www.novella.ac.uk) (PI: Ann Phoenix) and included a linked PhD studentship (Catherine Walker). The overall aim of the study was to improve understanding of the diversity and negotiated complexity of families’ lives in relationship with their environments, with regard to the meanings of ‘environment’ in everyday family lives and family practices. After a first stage of secondary analysis of eight family case studies drawn from the qualitative subsample of the Young Lives study in Andhra Pradesh/Telangana (www.younglives.org.uk), the second stage of the research involved new data collection with 24 families with diverse economic, social, cultural and demographic profiles in India (Andhra Pradesh/Telangana) and in the UK (southern England). The research involved a volunteer sample of families, recruited through school Years 7 and 8 (children aged 11-14), selecting schools in urban and rural locations and on the basis of school characteristics (including state/government and fee-paying schools in both countries). We visited each family three times over a period of approximately two weeks (although timing varied depending on families’ availability): Visit 1 involved a family group interview with all household members who wished to participate, and incorporated a cognitive mapping exercise to explore meanings of environment in families’ lives. Families were given disposable cameras (one each for the main caregiver and the focal young person, and a third camera for the rest of the family) and took photos over seven days to show what was important in their everyday lives and environments. Visit 2 involved individual interviews with the caregiver and young person, and a walking or driving interview in their local area involving the caregiver, young person, and anyone else in the family who wanted to come. Visit 3 involved photo elicitation interviews. The main caregiver and young person were interviewed individually, and each selected five of their pictures to discuss with the rest of the family, while other family members separately chose three photos from the third camera. Afterwards, the family group were interviewed together, discussing the photos selected and choosing three which they agreed best conveyed what was important in their everyday lives. Interviews were transcribed and, where necessary, translated into English. Overall, eighteen sets of family transcripts have been archived. These transcripts are of research activities carried out with families in urban India (6), rural India (3), rural UK (4) and urban UK (5). The ‘overview of research activities’ document provides a list of research activities carried out with each family. To protect confidentiality, visual materials (maps, photographs) and audio recordings have not been archived. Where data have not been archived (e.g., some school group activities, and family transcripts for cases not listed here) this is because of risk of identifiability.

Data creators:
Creator NameEmailAffiliationORCID (as URL)
Boddy, Janetj.m.boddy@sussex.ac.ukUniversity of Sussexhttp://orcid.org/0000-0002-6983-050X
Phoenix, Anna.phoenix@ucl.ac.ukUCL Institute of EducationUnspecified
Walker, Catherinecate.walker.11@alumni.ucl.ac.ukUCL Institute of EducationUnspecified
Sponsors: ESRC
Grant reference: RES-576-25-0053
Topic classification: Natural environment
Social stratification and groupings
Society and culture
Psychology
Keywords: Meanings of environment in everyday family lives; local environments; everyday practices; environmental concerns; family relationships
Project title: NOVELLA (Narratives of Varied Everyday Lives and Linked Analyses) SUBPROJECT: FAMILY LIVES AND THE ENVIRONMENT
Grant holders: Janet Boddy, Ann Phoenix
Project dates:
FromTo
3 October 201131 March 2015
Date published: 08 Nov 2016 10:22
Last modified: 14 Jul 2017 14:25

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