Engaging Gypsy, Roma, and Traveller communities in research: maximizing opportunities and overcoming challenges

Louise Condon, Helen Bedford, Lana Ireland, Susan Kerr, Julie Mytton, Zoe Richardson, Cath Jackson

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Gypsy, Roma, and Traveller people are marginalized worldwide and experience severe health inequalities, even in comparison to other ethnic minority groups. While diverse and hard to categorize, these communities are highly cohesive and members have a strong sense of identity as a group apart from the majority population. Researchers commonly experience challenges in accessing, recruiting, and retaining research participants from these communities, linked to their outsider status, insular nature, and history of discrimination. In this article, the challenges and the opportunities of engaging Gypsies, Roma, and Travellers in a multicenter qualitative research project are discussed. The management of public involvement and community engagement in this U.K.-based project provides insights into conducting research effectively with ethnically and linguistically diverse communities, often considered to be “hard to reach.”
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1324-1333
Number of pages10
JournalQualitative Health Research
Issue number9
Early online date2 Feb 2019
Publication statusPublished - 1 Jul 2019



  • Travellers
  • Gypsies
  • Roma
  • qualitative research
  • engagement
  • public involvement
  • vulnerable groups
  • research methods
  • qualitative interviews
  • United Kingdom

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