Cross-Cultural Environmental Research: Lessons from the Field

Rebecca L. Schewe, David Hoffman, Joseph Witt, Matthew Freeman, Brian Shoup

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

3 Scopus citations


Environmental research with diverse stakeholders poses challenges for researchers, particularly when that research is also cross-cultural and/or cross-language. We argue that cross-cultural and/or cross-language environmental research requires translators and interpreters as active research partners, culture brokers and community partners to support research accountability and engagement, and that face-to-face surveys address challenges of other survey modes in cross-language and/or cross-cultural research. Drawing upon cross-cultural and cross-language environmental research with Vietnamese–American fishers on the U.S. Gulf Coast, we find that face-to-face surveys may promote response rate and allow for clarification, particularly for participants with language and cultural barriers. Translators, interpreters, culture brokers, and community partners play a critical role in cross-language and cross-cultural research and researchers must reflect on their role shaping research.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)241-253
Number of pages13
JournalEnvironmental Management
Issue number2
StatePublished - Aug 2022


  • Mixed methods
  • Research methods
  • Response rate
  • Survey
  • Translators

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Global and Planetary Change
  • Ecology
  • Pollution


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