This article explores qualitative research issues that arise when researchers engage in study within their own ambiguous, unstable, conflictual, and rapidly changing society. We explore the topics of the relationship between the researcher and the context, the difficulty in choosing relevant research quest ions under such conditions, and the relevance of generalizing or transferring findings from such contexts to other sites and populations. We present two research cases from the Israeli context: one that demonstrates an external conflict (between Israelis and Palestinians) and one that demonstrates an internal conflict (between Israelis and Israelis), analyzing them according to these three main issues. Our conclusions focus on the methodological implications that researching one’s ambiguous and conflictual “backyard” have for qualitative researchers.


Research and Context, Reflexivity, Researcher as Instrument, Palestinian-Israeli Conflict, and Generalizability and Transferability


We would like to thank Prof. Dan Bar-On and Prof. Shifra Sagy for sharing their research experiences with us and for their valuable comments on this article.

Publication Date


Creative Commons License

Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial 4.0 License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-Share Alike 4.0 International License.




Submission Location


To view the content in your browser, please download Adobe Reader or, alternately,
you may Download the file to your hard drive.

NOTE: The latest versions of Adobe Reader do not support viewing PDF files within Firefox on Mac OS and if you are using a modern (Intel) Mac, there is no official plugin for viewing PDF files within the browser window.