“Doing Urban Ethnography: New interdisciplinary and methodological approaches to comparative urban research”

RC21 Conference @ Delhi, India, September 18th–21st, 2019

In and Beyond the City: Emerging Ontologies, Persistent Challenges and Hopeful Futures

Panel Abstract (P3)
Academic, as well as non-academic disciplines with a research interest in urban transformation processes, face methodological challenges when searching for new ways to visualize and analyze the urban every day, its social and spatial practices, connections, interactions, infrastructures and rising complexities. The panel will focus on new interdisciplinary and creative methodological approaches in the intersection of sociology and ethnography to capture the inner logic of the social and constructed environment of cities. Urban ethnographic methods (e.g. mapping/go-along) help to gain access to the social and spatial practices of the urban every day. Furthermore, urban ethnography facilitates the analysis of data sets regarding embodied socio-spatial practices. Therefore, the panel invites scholars with interdisciplinary approaches who bridge theoretical concepts with new research methods to address more comprehensively the complexity of urban research issues today. The panel invites presenters who contribute to theoretical concepts on pressing issues of global urbanism and comparative theorizations, e.g. urban social inequality/injustice, gender or migration. Works should provide a theoretical grounding to methodological challenges, and make a case as to the relevance of the panel topics. What methodological concepts help us to think beyond our very own disciplinary boundaries? Ideas, which are not only connected to “terms” but focus on comparative theorizations or didactic mediation, e.g. how methodological tools can be developed to capture the notions of time, embedded imaginations or the invisible or unspeakable dimensions of everyday urban practices? How do urban imaginaries change the way people produce and form new urban spaces? How to enhance new (digital, visual, creative) methods in the intersection of sociology and ethnography to capture growing complexities of embodied knowledge and urban practices that shape, produce and challenge the urban today?

For those submitting abstracts to the panel convenor, each abstract submission must be accompanied by Panel Number (“P3”); Panel Name (“Doing Urban Ethnography”); Author last namein the Subject Line. The abstract must not exceed 300 words and should clearly indicate the title of the paper, research questions, theoretical contribution and connection to the panel theme. Author details about institutional affiliation must also be included.

Please send your submissions as one PDF by the deadline of 20th January 2018 to the panel convenor carolin.genz@hu-berlin.de and cc your submission to rc21delhi@gmail.com. Selected papers will be notified by 20th February 2019.

Picture: Photo by Karthikeyan K on Unsplash

Posted in UEL
Posted by:Carolin Genz

Carolin Genz holds a master degree in European Ethnology and Urban Cultures from Humboldt-University of Berlin (2009-2013) and is currently doing research at the Department for Cultural and Social Geography at the Humboldt-University since 2015. Her Ph.D. topic is: "Urban Resistance: Upheaval of Civil Society? Ethnographical perspectives on the transformation of urban everyday life“. Specifically, her research focuses on practices of production and appropriation of space, urban governance and digital tools of urban resistance and network practices. Furthermore, she is an academic consultant and member of the advisory board for Gender Mainstreaming and Diversity for the Senate Department of Housing and Urban Development in Berlin.

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