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Send me a note while you are here, or email me at josh at macromorphic dot com or at barbourjosh at utexas dot edu.

2504A Whitis Ave. (A1105)
Austin, TX 78712
United States



Special Issue on Shadowing Available Online

Joshua Barbour

My piece on the practical side of shadowing research with Rebecca Gill and Marleah Dean is now available in the online version of a great special issue of Qualitative Research in Organizations and Management. We drew on our experiences shadowing in hospitals, businesses, and power plants. We organized the piece on ten practical suggestions for shadowing that we organized into three fluid phases:


#1 Proactively engage issues with shadowees ahead of time

#2 Prepare for embodied shadowing

#3 Take classes or hold discussion on the emotional side of qualitative methods

#4 Pack a “shadow kit”


#5 Plan to follow the rules, at first

#6 Play around with strategies for notetaking

#7 Dance in the doldrums

#8 Locate or create social support


#9 Mitigate the anticipation of shadower-as-betrayer

#10 Exit the field mindfully