As academic collaborations become increasingly virtual and geographically widespread, researchers are faced with novel challenges, as well as opportunities, as they attempt to create equitable, effective research partnerships. In this essay, the authors highlight the importance of shared reflexive conversations in building a strong foundation for collaboration and the coproduction of knowledge, particularly in the midst of ongoing crises. In so doing, they reflect on their experience of planning research on social innovation in small-scale fishing communities in Africa and Asia, as a team spread across six countries.
Kyoko Kusakabe is a professor of gender and development studies at Department of Development and Sustainability, School of Environment, Resources and Development, Asian Institute of Technology in Thailand. She has over 20 years of experience in research and teaching gender and development in Asia especially focusing on the Mekong Subregion. Aside from her academic work, she has experience in working with NGOs and government organizations for gender mainstreaming and integration of gender issues. Her research focus is on gender issues in labor/work, especially on labor migration, garment factory workers, informal employment, and agriculture and fisheries. She is currently an executive committee member of Gender in Aquaculture and Fisheries Section of Asian Fisheries Society. She is also a coeditor-in-chief of Gender, Technology and Development journal. She is a coauthor of Thailand’s Hidden Workforce: Burmese Migrant Women Factory Workers (Zed Books, 2012, coauthored with Ruth Pearson) and coedited Fisherfolk in Cambodia, India and Sri Lanka: Migration, Gender and Well-Being (Routledge, 2020).