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The University of Southampton
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Centre for Political Ethnography

About Us


The Research Centre fills a three-fold gap. First, ethnography is ‘endangered’ because it takes a long time, is ethically sensitive and has difficulty in securing funds. Second, political ethnography is a minority sport in political science. Despite its distinct and distinctive contribution, its potential is realised rarely. Too few political scientists are engaged in observation. Finally, in the era of impact, ethnographic fieldwork has the singular advantage that it involves working with the end users of research.


Since 2012, The Department of Politics and International Relations at the University of Southampton has appointed core staff in this field. We have created an international network of like-minded researchers. We have an innovative research programme. We have recruited like-minded colleagues from Law and Sociology, Social Policy and Criminology.

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