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10 pages/≈2750 words
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Social Sciences
Dissertat. Methodology
English (U.S.)
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West Africa: A Case Study of Human Trafficking in Sierra Leone (Dissertat. Methodology Sample)


Finalize the third step of your research proposal, and focus on the proposed research methodology, and methods of data collection and analysis. Research Topic: Human Trafficking in West Africa - A Case Study of Human Trafficking in Sierra Leone


Human Trafficking in West Africa
A Case Study of Human Trafficking in Sierra Leone
Step 3: Method and Methods
Name of University
Student’s Name:
Supervisor’s Name:
Course Code:
Due Date:  DATE \@ "d MMMM yyyy" 24 October 2015
Research Methodology
In its purpose and broad aim, the proposed research undertaking will investigate the phenomena of human trafficking in Sierra Leone, and the major influential factors that determine the trend. Thereafter, the study will subsequently determine the role that Sierra Leone plays within the West African geographical terrain, to influence human trafficking occurrences in the region, either positively or otherwise. As such, the two sub-questions to be posed by the proposed study will be (a) based on social awareness, are human trafficking occurrences regarded as a major problem in Sierra Leone, and (b) which characteristic factors of Sierra Leone positively influences human trafficking in the country, and which define the role the country plays in human trafficking across the West African geographical terrain.
The proposed research undertaking will employ a qualitative research approach with a case study research design. While studying human trafficking in the west African region, the study will focus on a case study of Sierra Leone. For instance, the perception of various stakeholders generated by primary data collection and analysis can help determine the nature of the phenomena in Sierra Leone and in West Africa in general. The study will need to qualitatively define what happens, how it happens, why it happens and the context in which human trafficking accrues in the case study nation, Sierra Leone. Secondly, to identify and explain the characteristic factors of Sierra Leone that positively influences human trafficking in the country, and which define the role the country plays in human trafficking across the West African geographical terrain, the study will need to integrate some qualitative primary data generated using face-to-face interviews, alongside some secondary data analysis of previous research findings. Consequently, the proposed research will employ a qualitative research approach with a case study design, to generate accurate and adequate findings that integrate both primary and secondary data analysis.
Participant Selection
To identify influential factors and determiners of human trafficking trends in the case study nation, and ultimately determine the influential role the case study nation plays in human trafficking occurrences, requisite data can only accrue from stakeholders in the actual human trafficking cycle. As such, the study will employ the qualitative research methodology to primarily target stakeholders involved in the human trafficking phenomena/cycle within Sierra Leone, including surviving victims of human trafficking who experienced the vice first hand and law enforcement agents who prevent and fight human trafficking occurrences when enforcing law and human rights. The stakeholder’s population also includes governmental and non-governmental representatives whose role, purpose and mission is against human trafficking occurrences, civilians in Sierra Leone who oppose or support human trafficking trends, and finally, participants and facilitators of human trafficking in Sierra Leone, either solely or to compliment other crimes such as drug trafficking.
To access this target population, the study will purposively sample four practitioners from a governmental agency (Human Rights Commission of Sierra Leone) and three non-governmental agencies (including Timap for Justice or Lawyers Centre for Legal Assistance, and National Forum for Human Rights), all focused on the protection of human rights and the fight against human trafficking. These target respondents will be contacted by phone, email and postal mail, to explain the study using a brief research proposal and request for interviews at the convenience of respondents. One of the selected non-governmental agencies (National Forum for Human Rights) will be assisting human trafficking victims in Sierra Leone, and will thus allow for the purposive sampling of four victims of human trafficking. These respondents will be selected from a pool provided by the agency, and contacted with the approval and participation of the director.
Further, the study will purposively sampled four law enforcement officers from the Criminal Investigation Department (CID) unit at a case study police station operating from within the capital city of Sierra Leone, downtown Freetown. This group will also include an interview with the SLP Director of Integrated Services, currently serving as the Assistant Inspector General of police. The last section of the sample will constitute seven purposively recruited members of the public residing in Freetown, without any bias for age, religion, gender or education background. The researcher will visit the largest and most popular shopping mall in Freetown (the Freetown Mall located at Wilkinson Road, Tigo headquarters building). While there, the researcher will approach and request 7 adults of either gender and of any age to participate in the brief interview. The final sample size (20) will thus incorporate [1] practitioners from Human Rights Commission of Sierra Leone, [3] practitioners from Timap for Justice or Lawyers Centre for Legal Assistance, and National Forum for Human Rights, [7] members of public residing at Freetown and shopping at the Freetown Mall, [4] law enforcement officers serving at the Criminal Investigation Department and the SLP Director of Integrated Services, as well as [4] victims of human trafficking in Sierra Leone being served by the National Forum for Human Rights.
Important to note, is the emphasis of gaining an informed consent from each participant, to voluntarily participate and retain anonymity. Before any participation in the data collection process, either through the face-to-face interview or questionnaire, each respondent will be given a consent form to fill. The consent form will assert his or her willingness to participate voluntarily prior to any interview. Only when a consent form is assigned will any respondent be questioned. A sample of the consent form to be used with all respondents has been attached as an appendix to the present paper.
Data Collection
The study will strategically collect both primary and secondary data for subsequent analysis and findings, using a case study qualitative research approach for the Sierra Leone nation. To begin with, the study will collect primary data from victims of human trafficking, law enforcement agents, government and non-governmental representatives, civilians in Sierra Leone, as well as facilitators and participants in human trafficking. This data will prioritize on the experiences, predisposing factors (including poverty, crime rates, cultural practices and traditions, lawlessness, frequent conflicts and wars, drug trafficking cartels, religious inclinations and among others), determiners and influencing contexts of human trafficking from the perspective of stakeholders in the case study nation.
Secondly, the study will collect secondary data on human trafficking in the country and the region. A part of the secondary data will be sourced from empirical primary research studies conducted previously in Sierra Leone and West Africa. The other part of secondary data will be generated from reports and studies conducted for, by and published under the United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF), the United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime (UNODC), the United Nations Population Fund (UNPF) and the government of Sierra Leone. The following sections highlight the data collection instruments to be employed:
Face-to-Face Interviews
This primary data could be collected using face-to-face interviews among the 20 sampled participants in the case study nation. The interview sessions will be guided by a protocol that highlights and directs the interviews to answer the overall research question, while also being open to new angles provided by the respondents encourse the sessions for each respondents. To begin with, the interview protocol will introduce the study, its purpose and aim, explain the role of the participant and assure him or her of absolute confidentiality. The interview protocol will then focus on two segments covering the research questions posed by the study, and finally terminate with the allowance for each respondent to add anything not covered by the interview, with recommendations on what should be done to fight human trafficking in Sierra Leone. Further, further, except for the four victims of human trafficking in Sierra Leone, the interview questions for the remaining 16 participants (practitioners from two different governmental agencies and two non-governmental agencies, members of the public and law enforcement officers) will be standard, focused on answering the main research question and its sub-questions.
The interview questions for the victims will be sensitive and focused on the painful personal experiences, while the interviews with other respondents will focus on determining what is done, what is not done, and the ways in which human trafficking occurrences in Sierra Leone are executed. The respondents will in agreement therefore, respond and answer the research question from different perspectives. Many of the interview questions to be posed have been provided as an appendix to this paper (research protocol and schedule). Further, each interview session will be shaped in a manner that optimizes the unique interaction with each respondent when determining which interview question to pose when, what to omit and what to inquire further.
Nonetheless, the basic interview questions will have two guiding themes namely (a) aw...
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