Department of Master of International Relations, Malindo Nusantara Research Centre and Department of Islamic Political Studies for Doctoral Degree Muhammadiyah University of Yogyakarta held a public lecture entitled “Methodology of Social Research” delivered by Dr. Teuku Afrizal on Wednesday, November 22nd 2017. This event was attended by master and doctoral students. Dr. Teuku Afrizal is a lecturer of the Ethnography and Development Research Unit, Faculty of Humanities, Arts and Heritage of University Malaysia Sabah.
Mr. Afrizal has explained the methodology in social research, and shared his experience in the field. According to Mr. Afrizal, a researcher must have a critical sensitivity in seeing a problem, the sensitivity is obtained by broadening our knowledge and horizons, reading a lot, observing, and involving ourselves in the field of research. As a researcher, we are not allowed to deduce and reduce the data we get in the field. However, we should observe all kinds of facts and phenomena that occur around us, then we sort the relevant data that can support our research. Beside critical sensitivity, creativity, intuition, and sense of research will also help to improve the research.
Mr. Afrizal also emphasized the importance of research schemes, starting from pre-research, research, to post-research. A researcher must be able to determine the level of his analysis. For instance, in the study of waste management, we have to decide our level of analysis, whether it is macro level such as government, or micro level such as community based research. A researcher must also be able to determine who will be the informant or respondent; institution or related agencies, public figures, and society, and distinguish between primary and secondary data. Thus, the analysis will become “thick, deep, and rich”.
Dr. Sidik Jatmika, lecturer of International Relations Department addressed the need for understanding the norms and social ethics prevailing in the field. In community based research, a researcher must also be able to build good communication and get along with the respondents or informants. Mr. Jatmika said, “there are some information that we can not obtain directly through interview”. The more we engage, the more we ask, the more our research will be rich.