Universiteit Leiden

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Cultural Anthropology and Development Sociology

Methodology Research Cluster

CADS researchers give methodology their own unique signature through two parallel engagements: (a) teaching and researching the full range of social science methods, from audio-visual engagements, through global ethnography, to statistical analysis; and (b) interrogating these multiple modalities employing the reflexivity of global ethnography. Our methodology is cross-cultural and encompasses participation, observation, the creative recording of sound, vision, taste and touch, interviewing, and oral and archival history.

Our methodologies builds from the insight that all social research creates, establishes and intervenes in collaborative relations of knowledge production, in which the historical construction of the identities of researchers, researched, and audience or client may shift, intersect, or even change place. We pay particular attention to the ways in which research interactions condition the sequence and timing of the production of knowledge and ethics (acquaintance, informed consent, data-gathering, dissemination). The research cluster critically debates qualitative decisions involved in quantitative research, the (history of) multiple media of research and how this multimodality of research is affected by digitalization. Cluster members build on their research in and for CADS courses, such as Media Worlds, Multivariate Analysis, Diversity and Power, Visual Methods in the Digital World, Research Methods in Cultural Anthropology, and Large Issues, Small Places: Theorizing Ethnographic Research.

Research Cluster members

Cluster Activities

The cluster members collaborate in research, teaching and outreach. We organize small-scale cluster meetings in which we discuss the development of teaching methodology and experiment with the multimodality of social research. Examples include the discussion of how classifications introduce qualitative assumptions in setting up statistical research; discussions about data management, resulting in international publications. Our hands-on courses in doing social research in the BSc and MSc programs stimulate students to participate in such experimental methods of doing and disseminating.


  • Pels P., Boog I., Florusbosch H.J., Kripe Z., Minter T.,
    Postma M., Sleeboom‐Faulkner M., Simpson B., Dilger H., Schönhuth M., Poser A, Castillo R. C., Lederman R. & Richards‐Rissetto H. (2018), Data management in anthropology: The next phase in ethics governance?, Social Anthropology 26(3): 391-413. 

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