About permissions

Getting permission to do research in an organization can be very difficult, because people are afraid you will hang out their dirty washing, get access to confidential information, or waste their time.

It can be very frustrating at the time, because you are often working with inadequate information and might not know the doorkeepers. However, you'll learn much more than you think about the organization by finding the entry channels and dealing with its people to gain admission. You are figuring out who the doorkeepers are and what the passwords are.

Be encouraged, and keep good notes. You will probably learn much but don't quite know what it is that you're learning, and then by the time you're in, it starts to feel familiar. Like many cultural learning experiences, it makes much more sense in hindsight.

You might find that access is limited (perhaps for good reasons), but you can modify your topic according to the extent of access you have. Besides, when you're in and trusted, they might provide greater access.