Call for Papers

Disability and the Global South

An International Journal

Disability Research in the Global South: Critical Questions & Methodological Challenges

Guest Editors: Karen Soldatic (University of New South Wales) and S. Janaka Biyanwila (University of New South Wales)

Research into disability has undergone a radical transformation with the emergence of disability studies since the early 1990s. The Eurocentric masculine ‘Myth of the Independent Researcher’ has been firmly contested enabling more creative knowledge production processes. The emergence of critically informed counter-hegemonic knowledges is increasingly grounded within the experiential, the local and the particular with a sense of the global. These challenges to knowledge production processes have been directed by disabled people’s call for knowledge production that is situated, inclusive and participatory. New methodological approaches have suggested disability-inclusive and participatory research as a core structure in the ‘doing’ of disability research. Many of these concerns, however, have emerged within Northern disability studies framed by the Northern experience of disability, disablement and difference. Overall, there remains little critical literature looking at the methodological, ethical and other issues involved in disability research in the global South, in particular those of Southern disability scholars, actors and activists.

This special issue seeks to open a space for critical debates and reflections on the issues and challenges of ‘doing’ global disability research. The overall aim is to question and challenge existing approaches in ways that contest and transform the dominance of Northern understandings of ‘doing disability research’, while exploring alternative disability methodologies within the Global South as a site of counter-hegemonic knowledge production. We are keen to learn from researchers, practitioners and activists, in particular those in the global South, critically engaging with theoretical and empirical work driven by and situated within Southern disability knowledges, spaces and places. We encourage contributions exploring a range of themes including (not exclusively):

  • Challenges in global disability research: methodological concerns
  • Ethics across cultures: contested terrains
  • Southern disability methodological approaches
  • Indigenous methodologies
  • North-South disability knowledge production and the global dynamics of disability knowledge production
  • The radical imagination, social movement research and dialogical methodologies Southern engagements and the role of the Southern disability researcher
  • The role of the non-disabled researcher
  • Southern movement perspectives on disability knowledge production
  • The discourse of ‘emancipatory’ research across cultures
  • Beyond methodological nationalism: institutions of global disability governance
  • Making research ‘productive’: from ‘knowledge’ generation to local transformative practice

Those wishing to submit an article, please email an ABSTRACT to Karen Soldatic ( Please insert ‘Submission for Southern Disability Methodologies Special Issue’ in the subject line. Manuscripts will be sent anonymously for double peer review, and comments and recommendations relayed to authors through the editors. Deadline for ABSTRACT submission: 1st MARCH 2014,  FULL PAPERS DUE BY 1 NOVEMBER 2014.