"Walking Around With a Camera". The Uses of Photography in Participatory Research and Social Intervention Processes

Diana Mata Codesal, Sónia Pereira, Concepcón Maiztegui-Oñate, Edith Ulloa Chevez, Eztizen Esesumaga, Andrea López del Molino


In this article we examine the potential of photography as a tool in educational intervention as well as in critical social research. The project "Walking around with a camera" enabled us to develop a collaboration between institutions dedicated to social transformation through intervention and research, as well as to reflect upon the challenges that this entails. In this interdisciplinary and collaborative project, we utilized photography as a research tool and as a way to empower a group of migrant women in the city of Bilbao, Spain. We explored the different roles of photography in the intersection of action, participation, and research: first, its narrative potential; second, as a trigger for deeper dialogue; third, as a way for these women to share their experiences with a wider audience. Among the findings, we highlight the complex relationship that exists among participating, researching, and intervening through social and educational programs, from an epistemological framework that claims a social purpose for research through alliances beyond the academic world. The co-creation of knowledge and mutual learning that resulted from this process stretches beyond immediate research findings or concrete interventions into the development of long lasting mutual trust that becomes incorporated into everyday practices.


photography; participation; collaborations; photovoice; migrant women; empowerment

DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.17169/fqs-19.1.2577

Copyright (c) 2017 Diana Mata Codesal, Sónia Pereira, Concepcón Maiztegi, Edith Ulloa, Eztizen Esesumaga, Andrea López del Molino

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This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License.