As mentioned above, research—mainly based on qualitative interviewing with both men and women, case studies, life histories and focus group discussions— was carried out, first in rural and then in urban East Africa. The focus for the re­search was on changing gender roles and relations as well as sexual and reproduc­tive health and behaviour by men and women.

Research in Kisii was carried out at different periods from the mid-1980s to the mid-1990s. Research in urban Dar es Salaam took place during one year (1996—97). The initial field study (1984—86) in Kisii consisted of both survey data (723 women and 200 men of reproductive age) as well as qualitative data. The subsequent studies were based on qualitative data collection, life histories and fo­cus group discussions with a selection of men and women (Silberschmidt 1991, 1992, 1995, 1999). All interviewees belonged to the Gusii tribe, and were either Catholics or Seven Day Adventists. The vast majority had not completed primary education.

The qualitative data collection in urban Tanzania took place during a one year field study (1996—97) in three low income squatter areas of Dar es Salaam: Ma – bibo, Tandale and Vingunguti/Buguruni. In-depth interviews were carried out with 38 women and 53 men by means of structured, semi-structured, and open – ended interviews. In addition, and in order to discuss major issues that came up in the in-depth interviews, thirteen focus group discussions (each with 8—10 par­ticipants) were conducted with different groups of men (aged 16—65) and women (17—69). The interviewees had different religious and ethnic backgrounds—with a majority being Muslims. The majority had a primary education. 7 out of the 53 men had attended secondary school. Only one of the 38 women had attended sec­ondary school.