My research at CEU relies on the video method and the roundtable technique to discuss audience’s ways of thinking about the sea rescue cause in the Central Mediterranean. After presenting a self-made video containing interviews with two members of a non-profit organization that conducts search and rescue operations of migrant boats on the Central Mediterranean Sea to a small sample size of participants, a roundtable discussion was held to debate their ways of thinking in relation to the sea rescue cause. In sharing video-based messages delivered by activists/humanitarian workers with a target audience, a discussion was initiated to explore some arguments, insights and assessments. Results showed a sense of frustration among participants and concerns about notions of legality vs illegality, individual vs collective responsibility, prosocial behavior, “limited” engagement, and perceiving the migration situation as an emergency. These results will be further discussed in my talk on 29 March in the IR seminar at CEU, and they not only contribute to a more comprehensive evaluation of audience responses to rescue operations of migrant boats in distress at high sea, but also suggest lines for future research about the role played by the video method and the roundtable technique in engaging people to debate human rights issues and humanitarian causes.
Lucien Vilhalva de Campos successfully completed his PhD in International Relations at the University of Lisbon in 2021, with his doctoral dissertation Beyond the Security Drama: Rethinking Humanitarian Scenes within a More Critical Approach being graded and approved with distinction. Since then, Lucien has been researching migration issues at universities and study centers in Germany and Austria. At CEU, he conducted the present research that is to be discussed in this seminar.