Personal profile

Overview

In my PhD project, I examine security practices that researchers develop and use in order to prevent, deal with, or address gendered risks in ethnographic fieldwork. Understanding security as a complex network of different actors, practices, and power dynamics, I analyse how gendered security networks in the field are created and maintained before, during and after fieldwork on both an institutional and individual level. I further explore how fieldwork contexts can facilitate certain types of gendered violence and how researchers and institutions engage with this issue in terms of prevention and mitigation.

In addition, I am a co-founder of The Safer Fieldwork Project. In this collaborative academic initiative, I am actively using the findings from my PhD research to organise safety workshops and raise awareness for research-related risks.

Research interests

  • Gendered and sexualized violence
  • Fieldwork methodology
  • Academic spaces
  • Security studies
  • Power theory

Biography

2019-ongoing: PhD in Social Anthropology, University of Manchester

2014-2016: MA in Social Anthropology at Johannes Gutenberg University, Mainz, Germany

2011-2014: BA in Social Anthropology and Comparative Literature at Johannes Gutenberg University, Mainz, Germany

Other research

February to August 2015
Mixed-methods study on the experience of sexual harassment and sexualized violence in fieldwork among German female anthropologists

August to November 2013                   
Fieldwork on security measures and public safety in Niamey, Niger

September to December 2012              
Fieldwork on a special police unit in Kinshasa, DR Congo

Prizes and awards

November 2014                                 
Award of the Faculty of History and Cultural Studies for an outstanding undergraduate dissertation, JGU Mainz

August 2013 to October 2013               
MA Research Scholarship in the project “Boundary Work: Police in West Africa”, by the German Research Foundation (DFG)

Supervision information

PhD supervisors:

  • Dr Angela de Souza Torresan
  • Dr Michelle Obeid

Further information

Selected academic presentations:

July 2022
"Transforming Gendered Security Practices and Networks in Ethnographic Fieldwork", EASA Belfast.

December 2021
„Gendered Violence and Safety in Fieldwork: A Security Network Approach”, Oberseminar Vorlesungsreihe am Institut für Ethnologie, Ludwig-Maximilians-Universität München.

 July 2021
„Gendered Violence and Security Practices: Towards an Applied Anthropology of Fieldwork Safety”, The Queer Anthro Interstice, AG Gender & Sexualities/Queer Anthropology, Online.

June 2021
„Creating Safer Spaces: Navigating the Impacts of Sexualized Violence in Academic Settings”. Panel at the ENPA Conference 2021, University of Helsinki.

May 2021
 „Rache, Macht und Feeling Rules: Geschlechtsspezifische Ressentiments in der Feldforschung“. Workshop: Ressentiments im Feld, Soziale Gefühle als Herausforderung für die qualitative Sozialforschung, Workshop am Institut für Politische Wissenschaften und Soziologie, Bonn.

April 2021
Presentation on gendered violence in fieldwork on the Workshop: "Truth Be Told: Safety and Support in Fiedwork", University of Kent.

October 2020
"Warum wir 2020 Affective Scholarship brauchen". [Why we need affective scholarship in 2020], at the Autumn School "Fieldwork meets Crisis", German Anthropological Association (DGSKA).

September 2020                                  
“Beyond victim blaming: Understanding and preventing gendered violence in the field”, in the panel: at the first meeting of the Network of Women in Fieldwork, University of Birmingham [Online].  

September 2020       
“The continuum of gendered violence in the field” at the first meeting of the Network of Women in Fieldwork, University of Birmingham [Online].

July 2016                                            
“‘Statistisch irrelevant?’ – Sexualisierte Gewalt in ethnologischen Forschungskontexten” [‘Statistically irrelevant?’ – gender-based violence in anthropological field research], Academic Colloquium of the Department of Social Anthropology, University of Göttingen                                         

June 2016                                                       
Presentation on gender-based violence in anthropological field research,  Department of Social Anthropology, University of Leipzig

October 2015                                      
“‘Wir sind die Besten der Besten’ – Selbstbilder einer Polizei-Spezialeinheit in der DR Kongo” [“‘We are the best of the best’ – self-images of a special police unit in the DR Congo”], bi-annual conference of the German Anthropological Association, Marburg

May 2015                                           
Presentation and Workshop on security and gender-based violence in field research contexts at the Anthropological Student Symposium (Ethnosymposium), Halle (Saale)

October 2014                                      
“Gender, Roles and Networks – Research and Security in Niger and the DR Congo”, at the workshop Women, Peace and Security, Police Academy Wertheim

June 2013                                           
“Somewhere between green and blue – A special police unit in the DR Congo”, at the workshop Just Police Work: Ethnographic Research on the Police in West Africa, Mainz

May 2013                                           
“‘Es ist wie jeden Tag Krieg’ – Zivile Polizeiarbeit in der D.R. Kongo” [‘It’s like war every day’ – civil police work in the DR Congo], at the Anthropological Student Symposium (Ethnosymposium), Cologne           

April 2013                                          
“Somewhere between green and blue – A special police unit in the DR Congo”, at the AES Spring Conference on Anthropologies of Conflict in a New Millennium, Chicago, USA

May 2012                                           
“‘Dafür sind wir nicht zuständig’ – Feldzugang in einer bürokratisch geprägten Gesellschaft” [‘We are not responsible for this’ – field access in a bureaucratic society], at the Anthropological Student Symposium (Ethnosymposium), Hamburg

Expertise related to UN Sustainable Development Goals

In 2015, UN member states agreed to 17 global Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) to end poverty, protect the planet and ensure prosperity for all. This person’s work contributes towards the following SDG(s):

  • SDG 5 - Gender Equality
  • SDG 16 - Peace, Justice and Strong Institutions

Keywords

  • Sexualized violence
  • Power theory
  • Security
  • Gender
  • Ethnographic Fieldwork
  • Social Anthropology
  • Safety

Fingerprint

Dive into the research topics where Laura Thurmann is active. These topic labels come from the works of this person. Together they form a unique fingerprint.
  • 1 Similar Profiles