An awareness of positionality, an attention to accountability, and a commitment to reflexivity are increasingly key elements to conducting geographical fieldwork. As such, the ‘field’ is not only a place where we go to conduct research. The ‘field’ is a place where people live, where histories are present, and where our actions are never objective. This short article discusses my experiences as an early career researcher as I came to terms with these realities during preliminary dissertation research in Nepal. As a result of several formative moments – including surviving a landslide – I slowly began to realize that issues of reflexivity and positionality are not only critical for more ethical research, but also these concepts result in more generative projects. Here, I discuss why I came to these conclusions and explain how my experiences led me to the work I am doing today.

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