We are working on a proposal on something called energy citizenship (codename: PARTENAIRE). Here is the concept note. Research-wise, the main idea is to run two things:
- A classic ER-style SSNA study on communitarian use of energy and energy tech.
- Participant observation on three (possibly four) sites where energy communities are forming and launching local initiatives around energy. Presumably, these will be:
- one in a very working class neighborhood in Bologna.
- one in a “just transition” area, probably Poland or eastern Germany.
- one in an ecovillage.
The classic-ER part of the study is going to happen in English and in writing – no argument there. But the work on the ground in the sites is going to be mostly oral, and in the respective local languages, also no argument. That leaves us with the problem of integrating the two layers.
To a first approximation, I was thinking of having ethnographers deployed on the ground that are native to the local languages, or as good as, but also fluent in English. They will be the ones to relay (in Engligh) the what happens onsite to the online conversation. Then, the coding happens only in English, though we do allow people to write on the forum in whatever language. We also encourage community members on the ground in the test sites to join the conversation online, but we know most people will not.
Can we do any better than this? How?