Method Development

The development of innovative methods of qualitative research is a particular strength of the department. In addition to interview methods and methodologies for engaging citizen publics with ethical and social dimensions of emerging technologies, a strong focus in the last years has been on the development of card-based discussion methods. These methods provide participants with a discursive repertoire to address the topic at hand, and thus allow the discussion of topics that participants find hard to address, either because they lack discursive resources or because they would otherwise discuss them only along one dominant dimension, omitting others. This method has been adapted for a wide range of issues, ranging from nanotechnology to microplastics, gene editing with CRISPR Cas-9, health data platforms, and responsibility in research and scientific integrity. More recently, we have also been engaged in designing larger scale co-creation processes for building a citizen health-data platform. We have now entered the phase of implementing this platform and learning about the methodological innovations needed to carry out such an engagement.