Facet methodology – principles and practices workshop
Wednesday 12 June 2013
2pm – 4pm
Professor Jennifer Mason, Co-director, Centre for the Study of Relationships
and Personal Life
Registration fee @ £50.00
‘Facet methodology’ – is an inventive orientation to researching the
multidimensionality of everyday lives and relationships, which puts
researcher creativity and imagination at the heart of methodological
This masterclass will introduce the ethos of the approach and explore how it
can be practiced and what its uses might be.
Masterclass participants will be invited to engage in practical ways with
the approach, and to consider what it might offer for their own research
projects and plans.
A health warning! – facet methodology is an orientation, requiring
imagination and inventiveness. Please don’t expect to be given a set of
techniques or methodological rules that can be learned and applied!
About facet methodology
Facet methodology was developed collaboratively through the work of the
Realities programme at the National Centre for Research Methods, at the
Morgan Centre, University of Manchester.
We wanted an inventive approach that enlivened and animated our enquiries
into everyday life and relationships, and that promised methodological
The approach was developed through our collaborative practice, in the doing
of research and analysis, rather than as a piece of armchair theorising or
We wanted a metaphor to articulate our research strategy, to ourselves and
others, and we lighted upon the visual metaphor of a cut gemstone. Our
approach envisions research fields as constructed through combinations and
constellations of facets as we might see in a gemstone, where facets refract
and intensify light, taking up the background, and creating flashes of depth
and colour as well as patches of shadow.
We found this a useful metaphor to think with, and to interpret the kinds of
practices we had been developing. In facet methodology, the gemstone is the
overall research question or problematic, and facets are conceived as
different methodological-substantive planes and surfaces, which are designed
to be capable of casting and refracting light in a variety of ways that help
to define the overall object of concern by creating flashes of insight.
Facets involve different lines of enquiry, and different ways of seeing. The
approach aims to create a strategically illuminating set of facets in
relation to specific research concerns and questions. The rigour of the
approach comes ultimately from researcher skill, inventiveness, creativity,
insight and imagination – in deciding how best to carve the facets so that
they catch the light in the best possible way.
You can read about facet methodology at:
To reserve your place at this exciting workshop, please fill in the
registration form via the weblink below