Getting Past the Gatekeeper: Safeguarding and Access Issues in Researching HIV+ Children in Jamaica

Paul Miller, Kemesha Kelly, Nicola Spawls

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle


This article is derived from a recently completed research study on the 'Schooling Experiences of HIV+ Children in Jamaica'. It is written against the background of researching children generally, and also in the context of researching vulnerable children, specifically those who are HIV+. Research carries with it various notions of power and ethics, often manifested in terms of researchers gaining access to participants, researchers' positionality (i.e. whether they are an insider or outsider) and the intended use of the research findings. As regards the field experiences being reported in this article, researcher positionality was of only limited consequence. However, the intended use of the output of the research was central to gaining access to the key participants (namely children who are HIV+), since overriding issues for 'gatekeepers' (namely state officials and partners) included safeguarding children and the protection of their right to privacy and confidentiality.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)167-174
Number of pages8
JournalPolicy Futures in Education
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - 2013
Externally publishedYes


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