Intimacy, Safety and Family: An Ethnographic Experience with Afghan Cultures

Yesterday, my family and relatives Skyped me and sang a birthday song in 3 languages. It was a simple call, but it moved me tremendously. That same night, my best friend called and… Continue reading

Kabul Police Check: A Question of Interrogation and Integrity

Two days ago, a policeman stopped us crossing the street. Farhad and I had just knocked off from work and wanted to go for tea at Kabul City Centre, a mall across the… Continue reading

Afghan Kite Flying and its Symbolism

I joined my Afghan friends for kite flying a few days ago. It is their favourite pastime. Last year, I saw no kites, so I naively criticised the culture of kite flying as… Continue reading

Travelling Tips To Afghanistan

I do not seek to be a Fodor’s or Lonely Planet, two of the more comprehensive travel guidebooks around. But for myself — and possibly other travellers, researchers, humanitarian workers — on future… Continue reading

Performing One’s Research

John Bohannon makes the most innovative, moving, inspiring and powerful TED talk through the use of dance and movements. As a scientist, he explores concepts of protons, atoms and states of matter, such… Continue reading

Practice as Research: Performing an Internship with CPAU

Having secured a wonderful internship opportunity as the Media Officer of a local Afghan non-governmental organisation, Cooperation for Peace and Unity, CPAU (see letter above), I have decided to interrupt/disrupt my studies for… Continue reading

Measuring Social Impact of NGOs: Problems and Suggestions

It is not uncommon to wonder where all the monies, donations, funds and aids have gone, especially in the case of Afghanistan. Why, after a decade of humanitarian interventions, is the country still… Continue reading

Evaluating Academic Projects through Research Excellence Framework

Many of the issues around evaluation, measurement, and assessment revolve around output, its wider reach and its sustainability, notions stemming largely, I believe, from Social Sciences. In the UK, the Research Excellence Framework… Continue reading

Social Theatre Questions and Peacebuilding Dilemmas

In this powerful 10-minute documentary trailer (link) by Brandeis University, “Acting Together On The World Stage”, the film highlights some of the tensions within social theatre and applied theatre, especially the theatrical, peacebuilding… Continue reading

“But Why Afghans?”: Discovering Underlying Research Motivations

“Why Afghanistan?” people ask me when I tell them about my PhD research project. Depending whom I’m speaking with, I notice my answer varies. This is because this seemingly curious, innocent question comes… Continue reading