Stories from the field

Author Elena Lopez

Elena Lopez – Blog 5: Commonwealth Connections

Now that I’ve returned home to Canada, this blog post addresses why I think it’s important to do research outside of Canada, and why I think doing research in other countries can be relevant to our Canadian context. Although my fieldwork has come to an end, my research will continue, and hopefully strengthen the connection between Canada and Malaysia. 

Elena Lopez – Blog 4: Fieldwork

In this blog post, I delve into the challenges and rewards of doing fieldwork. This is my second time doing fieldwork, and while I am still a relative novice, I can provide some guidance and advice for others who are thinking about incorporating fieldwork into their studies. I discuss fieldwork as practice, praxis, and provocation, and I share some excerpts of my fieldnotes to provide a glimpse of what it’s like to be in the field. 

Elena Lopez – Blog 3: Migrant Labour

In this podcast, I discuss the role migrant workers play in constructing public infrastructure, namely the transit system. Public transportation is often advocated as a good that benefits broader society. However, it’s important to remember that migrant workers are part of society too, and their contributions should be recognized. One way of doing this is through the inclusion of migrant workers in union membership.

Elena Lopez – Blog 2: Mega Games and Labour Migration

In June 2016, I began my stay with the organization Building and Wood Workers’ International (BWI) in their regional Asia & Pacific office located in Malaysia. In this blog, I introduce BWI’s mega games campaign. International sporting events like the Olympics and the World Cup depend on the construction sector, and often involve migrant workers coming to the host countries to build infrastructure. These mega games provide an opportunity to organize workers and put pressure on the host countries to respect labour rights. 


Elena Lopez – Blog 1: Introduction

Sophia interviewed me on April 29th about my background, my upcoming field work in Malaysia, and the organization I will be working with (Building and Wood Workers’ International). We talked about what I’m most looking forward to in my field work and what I hope to get out of this experience.

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