The project is coordinated by IKME in collaboration with BILBAN and implemented through a project manager, a steering committee, an advisory body and with the assistance of an IT technician and two administration clerks.
At the beginning of the project the project team in cooperation with experts identified and established a statistically correct methodological tool which guided the research.
The researchers who carried out the interviews were selected according to the following criteria:
- Previous experience in history research;
- Track record in interviewing techniques;
- Full commitment to provide a balanced, objective and neutral contribution to the project.
The collection of the data and the development of the audiovisual database were achieved according to the following steps:
- Identification of interviewee sample: The 1960 census indicated 115 mixed villages with 107.173 inhabitants (33287 TC and 73886 GC i.e. 31% - 69%). The population in age brackets 20-55 years living in mixed villages in 1973 (50-85 in 2003) were 60.660 and their life expectancy in 2003 (based on a calculated average mortality rate of 1.6% ) is of the order of 31.543. We aim to identify a sample of 2.5% amounting to circa 750 people of which we will focus on the 20% i.e. 150 interviewees fulfilling the projects criteria.The tasks involved in the identification of the size and the composition of the interviewees sample are:
- Identification of the bi-communal villages from the 1973 census extrapolation in conjunction with the 1960 physical census,
- Calculation of the number of people expected to still be alive among those 50 years old and/or older, who were at least 20 years old in 1973 (for T/C, who abandoned their villages in 1963, the potential age will be over 60).
- Calculation of the percentage composition of the above over a population of 750 citizens - 500 G/C and 250 T/C (given that the overall T/C population of the bi-communal villages was circa 30%) spread over all bi-communal villages.
- The identification of the potential 150 interviewees (100 G/C and 50 T/C) covering comprehensively the range of the topics addressed in the scope of the project.
- The researchers addressed open invitations to identified key persons from the corresponding villages (the priest / muezzin, the teacher, the muktar, the Co-op secretary, the refugee association officer etc) informing them about the project and inviting them to spread the information further and to assist with identifying interviewees fulfilling the following criteria:
- Living in bi-communal villages in 1963 or/and 1974;
- Age of 50 or over (60 for the T/C that left in 1963);
- Potentiality to deliver a testimony
- The potential interviewees were approached directly in order to identify interested interviewees fulfilling the following criteria:
- Geographical coverage pro-rated over total population of the villages
- Balanced number of testimonies per topic
- Gender balance
- The selected interviewees were evaluated in Open Forum meetings in which, participation was actively and widely promoted to interested parties (civil society organisations, academics with special focus on the more relevant branches of academia -(historians, sociologists, etc) and the public in general. The Open Fora had the right to exclude interviewees who were considered as unsuitable and contrary to the aims of the project.
- The interviewees were visited and the interview performed by recording the testimony in single steady frame facing the interviewee with a stationary camera operating on tripod.
- The audiovisual data was evaluated, validated and approved by the Group of Experts and subsequently downloaded into a computer database and edited in the minimum possible trimming to preserve the originality of the interviewee.
- The interviews vocal data was scripted in text that accompanies the equivalent audiovisual version. Summaries of all texts were translated in English. All texts were loaded into internet web space and were exposed to public evaluation verification. All considerable comments appear in the relevant space of the web page www.ikme.eu/cybihi