August 2020 - Janet Ogundairo
Interview of the Fellow of the month
August 2020 - Janet Ogundairo (PhD student at the Department of Sociology, Faculty of the Social Sciences, University of Ibadan)
"Do not be discouraged by rejections because it is part of the journey to becoming successful. Position yourself and engage on platforms such as conferences, seminars to share your ideas, gain more knowledge and network."
Being part of the IFRA fellowship…
Describe yourself briefly
I am Janet Ogundairo, a PhD student at the Department of Sociology, Faculty of the Social Sciences, University of Ibadan, Ibadan, Nigeria.
Since when are you a fellow of IFRA-Nigeria?
I became a fellow of IFRA-Nigeria in February, 2017.
How have you benefited from IFRA-Nigeria?
One of the major positive decisions that I have made in life is joining IFRA-Nigeria. The institute has been of immense and valuable benefits to me since I joined in 2017. The first training that I attended at IFRA-Nigeria was on bibliography research in February, 2017. The training impacted the way I sourced for literature for my research. Other research trainings and seminars include the use of reference managers (Zotero that was facilitated by Sara Panata), ‘Nocturnal Fieldwork and Assisted Field Research' (facilitated by Christel Oloukoi); ‘Researching the History of Medicine and Health in Nigeria: Themes, Methods, Ethics, and Outputs’ by John Manton etc. These trainings have made huge impact on my doctoral research by enhancing my methodological, analytical and writing skills.
The institute sponsored my trip to Kenya in 2018. I was one of three Nigerian students were selected in July 2018 to participate in a Summer school on “Methodological Training in Social Sciences” at Nandi Hills in Nandi County, Kenya. It was an opportunity to meet and learn from scholars from diverse disciplinary backgrounds. I learnt how to effectively manage qualitative data from seasoned researchers. The training also exposed me to archaeological research, combining sources for fieldwork. I was introduced to how to do mapping on the field. It was an exciting and enriching experience.
IFRA- Nigeria facilitated my trip to Paris in France as a Visiting Scholar at laboratoire PRODIG, Campus Condorcet in Aubervilliers in December 2019. The trip was sponsored by the French Embassy in Nigeria. The scholarship allowed me access to well-equipped libraries for literature search which has greatly improved my doctoral field work.
As a research fellow, the IFRA-Nigeria has continued to provide resourceful supports for my research. First, with the library at the Institute of African Studies, University of Ibadan, I have access to a conducive and resourceful workspace. It also, from time to time, provides me with relevant information with respect to my area of research. IFRA has helped in widening my network of researchers. It provided the platform for meeting and connecting scholars and researchers who have positively impacted on my career.
A bit more about yourself….
What are your main research interests?
I am interested in maternal and child health, pastoral communities, environmental sociology, migration and mobility. At present, I focus on the pastoral community in Southwestern Nigeria
What research project are you currently working on?
My research project is on child health among the pastoral Fulani in Ibarapa Communities in Oyo State. I am interested in how the Fulani construct health among under-5 children, seasonal and settlement variation of childhood diseases among them, model of disease causation, traditional healing system vis-à-vis child health etc. I have conducted extensive interviews with mothers and fathers of under-5 Fulani children; religious leaders, traditional healers and community leaders in various Fulani settlements in Ibarapa communities. I also employ observation of daily activities in these settlements.
What is the main advice you will give to a junior researcher ?
There is saying that ‘anything worth doing is worth doing well’. That will be the thought behind my advice to any junior researcher. I will implore him or her to always seek for ways of improvement. Cultivate relationships. Be humble to learn from your peers and senior colleagues. Do not be discouraged by rejections because it is part of the journey to becoming successful. Position yourself and engage on platforms such as conferences, seminars to share your ideas, gain more knowledge and network.
Where do you see yourself in the future?
I visualise myself as a scholar of international repute. As a researcher, I want my voice to be reckoned with on maternal and child health, social epidemiology, social determinants of health; infectious diseases especially among pastoralists, mothers and under-fives. I want to build network of relationships that will consist of scholars from diverse disciplinary backgrounds that will enrich my scholarship as well.. I plan to collaborate with both early career and advanced scholars in research. I am also interested in interacting with my colleagues and junior colleagues by providing tips, opportunities on becoming successful in our chosen paths.
Anything else you’d like to share with us?
I implore IFRA-Nigeria to keep up the good work in preparing and molding generations of scholars. I am proud to be known with IFRA and I will continue to wear the badge with honour.
More information about Janet Ogundairo