Fieldwork useful information

Fieldwork – urban environments


Barcelona Field Studies Centre

Some urban fieldwork ideas: here


Retail fieldwork

An Example –  Globalisation

How is Nanjing connected to the rest of the world?

Contextualised title

Asking ‘How is…’ will encourage description but not necessarily explanation. ‘How well is Nanjing connected to the rest of the world?’ would encourage a more evaluative approach and would allow students to access the higher levels of the mark scheme.


Candidates may apply their knowledge of the factors that drive globalisation at a global scale (such as trade, MNC structures, improved transport and communication, immigration / emigration) to evidence seen in the study area. They may be able to compare and contrast the study area to a named city or region from a case study.

Primary and secondary evidence

Land use mapping of town centre to identify independent shops; national chains and TNCs. This would be a similar analysis to ‘clone town’ survey (see weblinks).
Mapping the origin of products in weekly shopping.
Pedestrian and traffic flows
Questionnaire surveys to identify opinions of shoppers / shopkeepers on impact of globalisation.
Use of census data to identify patterns of migration.

Encouraging independent thought

1 Create a short class questionnaire for whole class collated results. Ask students to work in groups of four. Each group to identify and agree an additional four questions for the survey.

2 Suggest a variety of enquiry questions and ask students to select one in addition to the overarching title eg:
Are TNCs located on streets with greater pedestrian / traffic flow?
Are people aged 14-21 better connected to the rest of the world than people aged over 50?
Who benefits from globalisation of Nanjing?
Which groups in Nanjing see globalisation as a threat?

Useful weblinks

The following link is to a description of a ‘clone town survey’ developed by a school in Guildford, Surrey and posted on the Teaching Today website

The New Economics Foundation (NEF) coined the phrase ‘clone town’. Follow this link to read their report on the state of Britain’s High Street.

The results of the survey can also be downloaded and students could use this as secondary data:

A simple description of how to conduct your own survey can be found at

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *