1st Edition

Over Researched Places Towards a Critical and Reflexive Approach

Edited By Cat Button, Gerald Taylor Aiken Copyright 2022
    180 Pages 9 B/W Illustrations
    by Routledge

    180 Pages 9 B/W Illustrations
    by Routledge

    The book explores the implications that research-density has on the people and places researched, on the researchers, on the data collected and knowledge produced, and on the theories that are developed.

    It examines the effects that research-density has on the people and places researched, on the researchers, on the data collected and knowledge produced, and on the theories that are developed. By weaving together experiences from a variety of countries and across disciplinary boundaries and research methods, the volume outlines the roots of over-research, where it comes from and what can be done about it.

    The book will be useful for social science students and researchers working in ethnographic disciplines such as Human Geography, Anthropology, Urban Planning, and Sociology and seeking to navigate the tricky ‘absent present’ of already existing research on their fields of exploration.

    Over-research: what, why, when, where, how?
    Cat Button and Gerald Taylor Aiken

    1. Towards a theory of over-researched places
    Gerald Taylor Aiken
    2. Overcoming over-research? Reflections from Sydney’s ‘Petri dish’
    Alistair Sisson, Jenna Condie, Pratichi Chatterjee, and Laura Wynne
    3. Epistemological, decolonial, and critical reflections in constructing research in former Yugoslavia
    Cyril Blondel
    4. Ghosts of researchers past, present and future in Mumbai
    Cat Button
    5. La Duchère, Lyon, France: an over-researched place that ignores itself
    Lise Serra
    6. ‘Research has killed the Israeli-Palestinian conflict’: navigating the over-researched field of the West Bank
    Alejandra de Bárcena Myrsep
    7. Overlooked cities and under researched Bharatpur, Nepal
    Hanna A. Ruszczyk
    8. When over-researchedness is invisibilised in bibliographic databases: insights from a case study about the Arctic region
    Marine Duc
    9. Confessions of an ‘academic tourist’: reflections on accessibility, trust and research ethics in the ‘Grandhotel Cosmopolis’
    Marielle Zill
    10. Locating climate change research: the privileges and pitfalls of choosing over- and under-researched places
    Chandni Singh


    Cat Button is a senior lecturer in the School of Architecture, Planning and Landscape at Newcastle University, UK. She creates interdisciplinary and international research on the global challenges of water. She is currently a co-investigator on two UKRI GCRF Hubs: Water Security and Sustainable Development and Living Deltas.

    Gerald Taylor Aiken is a research associate at the Luxembourg Institute of Socio-Economic Research (LISER) and a fellow at the Rachel Carson Center for Environment and Society. He researches the role of community in pursuing low-carbon futures, particularly how community is used to understand, value, and relate to the environment.

    "Urban studies has been heavily shaped over the past half century by serial bursts of scholarship focusing on a small number of cities, or parts of cities. Through this process certain cities or urban districts have emerged as exemplars of urban change everywhere to such an extent that they can even emerge as clichés. In this topical and innovative collection, authors and contributors confront the phenomenon of over-researched places head on. Drawing on a range of lucid case studies from across world the book's contributors confront for the first time what it means for urban studies disciplines to be so heavily reliant on a small number of paradigmatic cases."

    Stephen Graham, Newcastle University, UK

    "Button and Taylor Aiken are to be applauded for bringing together this brilliant, long overdue and incisive examination of the concept and processes of over research. Globally framed and theoretically and empirically nuanced, each of the chapters push us to rethink what over research means and reconsider its implications for social research."

    Sarah Neal, University of Sheffield, UK