From May 16 to 20, a training session on qualitative research methods was held in Bamako for members of the Donkosira association. Supervised by Dr. Marie-Christine Deleigne and Dr. Marie Rodet, this meeting aimed to strengthen the skills of the Donkosira team in order to conduct the qualitative component of the socio-economic survey in Mambiri.
Intrinsically participatory, the training began with some preliminary reflections on the notion of “qualitative research” and its interests. The team emphasized the objective of reliability and depth, the intention to understand the meaning of quantitative results that measure frequency, correlations between characteristics and practices.
Marie-Christine Deleigne presented a brief history of this scientific approach, its rules and associated research methods and protocols. The essential rules of the qualitative approach were discussed: empathy; neutrality (the absence of judgments, of preconceived ideas); the gathering of information (by triangulation, saturation); the preparation and keeping of a field journal. Qualitative research is composed of different methods: individual interviews (semi-directive or directive); opened life stories; group interviews; discussion groups; focus groups (reflection groups led by a facilitator), observation (participant or non-participant). The methods used for the rest of the research at Mambiri are mainly individual interviews and focus groups.
Practical advice was given to the team, such as mastering the interview guide, adapting the choice of topics to the flow of the interview, keeping a pace that allows the word to flow, asking for clarification, and reopening the discussion.
The team and the trainer then jointly developed an interview guide for the individual interviews conducted at Mambiri in June 2022. This co-construction of the interview material also allowed for the enrichment and development of the research questions and the points to be explored.
The presentation of the final report of the CNDH on Thursday, May 19 was the occasion for a practical exercise of non-participant observation and note-taking. Finally, the training ended after a phase of familiarization with the dictaphones used in the survey.
At the end of June, the Donkosira team applied the acquired skills during a new phase of qualitative investigation in Mambiri!
Aline Desdevises, Mariam Coulibaly, Assa Waly Diakité