Call for submissions: Reflexive, creative, and critical research methodologies in disaster studies

Source(s): Emerald Group Publishing Limited
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Submission deadline date

31 December 2023


Disaster Prevention and Management Journal invites submissions of original research and case studies for a special issue titled: Reflexive, Creative, and Critical Research Methodologies in Disaster Studies.

This special issue explores the evolving landscape of research methods following the release of the Disaster Studies Manifesto. The manifesto emphasizes the need for a reflexive and collaborative approach to disaster research. We seek contributions that address the political and ethical dimensions of research methodologies and examine how these can either reproduce power imbalances or challenge dominant narratives while expressing solidarity with disaster-affected communities.


Traditional disaster research methods, such as surveys and interviews, have often perpetuated colonial tendencies of extraction and maintained artificial boundaries between "experts" and "victims." However, recent years have witnessed the gradual emergence of innovative approaches that challenge conventional practices. Researchers have turned to participatory, digital, visual, and other creative methods, including photovoice, video voice, documentary making, and participatory video production. These methodologies aim to highlight alternative and local perspectives, empowering disaster-affected communities to present their experiences and insights in their own terms. Creative and reflexive methodologies have the potential to overcome the language and literacy barriers commonly associated with conventional methods, fostering inclusive and collaborative research practices.

While adopting these new methodologies offers exciting opportunities, it also presents new challenges. For instance, video and visual methods may inadvertently expose sensitive information that disaster-affected individuals did not intend to make public. Additionally, despite researchers' intentions to empower affected individuals, the frameworks within which they work may reflect their colonial or restrictive tendencies. Therefore, it is imperative to engage in critical discussions on creative freedom, decolonization, authorship, censorship, and ethical considerations. Furthermore, this special issue aims to explore good practices for using participatory, creative, and reflexive methodologies to minimize the risks for disaster survivors and maximize their empowerment.


This special issue aims to achieve the following objectives.

  1. Engender critical discussions on research methods and approaches in disaster studies, examining their potential to reproduce power imbalances, and marginalize alternative forms of disaster knowledge. 
  2. Explore how reflexive and creative research methodologies can be utilized to interrogate power dynamics in the interpretation and analysis of disasters, while expressing solidarity with communities most impacted by these events. 
  3. Provide practical guidance and insights into the application of reflexive, creative, and critical research methodologies in the field of disaster studies. 

Scope of the Special Issue

We invite researchers, scholars, and practitioners to submit original contributions that explore the themes of reflexive, creative, and critical research methodologies in disaster studies. Potential topics include, but are not limited to:

  • Participatory research approaches and their implications for disaster studies 
  • Ethical considerations and challenges in using creative methodologies 
  • Power dynamics and decolonizing research in disaster studies 
  • Engaging marginalized communities and amplifying their voices through creative methods 
  • The role of digital technologies and social media in disaster research 
  • Reflexivity and researcher positioning in participatory research 
  • Comparative analyses of conventional and alternative methodologies in disaster studies 
  • Best practice for implementing participatory, creative, and reflexive research methodologies 

Guest Editors

Dr Kaira Zoe Alburo-Cañete Humanitarian Studies Centre, International Institute of Social Studies, Erasmus University Rotterdam

Kirstin Kreyscher  School of Humanities and Social Sciences, Deakin University

Dr. Maria Carinnes Alejandria Department of Sociology and Anthropology, Universiti Brunei Darussalam

Submissions Information

Full papers for this special issue will be by invitation only. If you are interested in submitting a paper, please send an extended abstract (not more than 500 words) to the guest editors via by 31 October, 2023. Authors of selected abstracts will be officially invited to submit a full paper due no later than 31 December, 2023.

Invited authors are requested to submit their manuscripts electronically through the online submission system of Disaster Prevention Management. Manuscripts should adhere to the journal guidelines for formatting and referencing. All submissions will undergo a rigorous peer review process to ensure the quality and relevance of the articles selected for publication. 

Submissions can be made through Scholar One Manuscripts. Please visit the author guidelines for the journal. Submitted manuscripts must not have been published previously, nor should they be under consideration for publication anywhere else.

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