The 14th Annual Ethnography Symposium


Theme: Seeing, Sensing and Following: Advances in Ethnographic Research

Hosted by University of Portsmouth

Faculty of Business and Law and Faculty of Humanities and Social Sciences

28th-30th August 2019

Website: Ethnography Symposium

Conference Co-Chairs

Dr Hamid Foroughi, University of Portsmouth

Dr Sarah Charman, University of Portsmouth

Dr Mike Rowe, University of Liverpool

Confirmed Keynote Speakers:

Dr Harriet Shortt, University of the West of England

Dr David Calvey, Manchester Metropolitan University

Professor Paul Atkinson, University of Cardiff

Call for Papers

The social world we study has changed in many ways (e.g. epistemologically, technologically and culturally) and so does how we practice ethnography. While the principles of long-term immersion in the field, systematic observation and writing detailed fieldnotes remain at the heart of ethnographic research, much has changed about the definition of the ‘field’, the focus of the research, the style of writing, and the mode of communication.

Ethnographers have embraced new ways both in how they explore social phenomena and how they communicate their research. This involves an increased awareness of the importance of utilising a wide range of senses - beyond observation - to navigate ethnographic research and explore hidden aspects of social life (e.g. ‘deep

story’). Ethnographers are also increasingly utilising a range of communicative resources in their work – including recorded sound, still and moving images, as well as speech and writing (e.g. multi-modal ethnography). Further, some other researchers work on the olfactory as well as the visual and auditory aspects through ethnography. More recently, researchers have adapted ethnographic methods to the study of communities and cultures created through computer-mediated social interactions (whether as virtual ethnography or netnography and even auto netnography). There is a clear recognition that multisensory experience and advanced technology have changed the way we understand and research everyday life.

In this year’s Ethnography Symposium, we would like to bring together ethnographers in different disciplines who engage in wide forms of ethnographic research. The symposium aims to showcase the richness and diversity of ethnographic methods. We expect that the majority of the contributions will be submitted in a written format and will be delivered using traditional presentational software, we are, however, open to contributions which use alternative media. Beyond this, and in keeping with past conferences, we aim to have the conference open to all who are interested in ethnographic methods. We welcome submissions from both postgraduate researchers and more experienced scholars.

Submission Details Abstracts (up to 750 words), should be submitted to in PDF format, saved as the author’s surname followed by the paper title by Friday 8th March, 2019. The abstracts should list all authors, an e-mail contact and institutional affiliation details at the top of the first page. Decisions on acceptance of papers, subject to external refereeing, will be given by e-mail by 29th March 2019.

All abstracts and full papers received prior to the conference, and no later than Friday 9th August 2019, will be circulated electronically to delegates.

Best Paper Award

This year the Symposium will again be running a Best Paper Award, co-sponsored by Emerald Publishing, the publisher of the Journal of Organizational Ethnography with which this conference is affiliated. This award will be made at the Symposium to a paper selected from among the full papers submitted to the conference webpage. When submitting a full paper, please indicate whether you wish your paper to be considered for the Best Paper Award. Submission for the Best Paper Award should be via e-mail to by Friday 9th August 2019. A submission to the Best Paper Award will be treated as an intention to publish the paper in the Journal of Organizational Ethnography.


We will also be awarding a Best Poster prize for a doctoral student. The prize is a waiver of the conference fee for the 2020 Symposium. We would like to encourage all doctoral students to present a poster. This might be in addition to the submission of a paper and perhaps cover a different aspect of your research. Should you wish to use innovative forms and technologies, please contact us. And if you intend to present a poster, please contact us via so that we can plan the space available.

Symposium attendance fees, accommodation and registration

1. Attendance fee for delegates in full-time employment - early bird rate (registration deadline 15th May 2019) - £325

2. Attendance fee for delegates in full-time employment (registration deadline 29th July 2019) - £365

3. PhD students and doctoral research graduate, postdoctoral students in part-time employment and unemployed (registration deadline 29th July 2019) - £215

The attendance fee includes access to all symposium abstracts, papers, proceedings, daytime refreshments and lunches, a drink reception on Wednesday 28th August and the informal Gala Dinner on Thursday 29th August. We also encourage PhD students to attend pre-conference PhD workshops on the morning of Wednesday 28th August. Full details of all of these events will be circulated.


Accommodation is not included in the conference fee. Information and details of local hotels will be emailed to delegates and posted on the Portsmouth website in the near future.

How To Register

Delegates wishing to register for the symposium will be able to do so from the New Year. They should register and pay online via the Ethnography Symposium website when it goes live in the New Year.

This will go live in January 2019.

If you prefer to pay by invoice, details will be added in due course.

When registering, please ensure that you select the appropriate fee: early bird (for those in full time employment), standard (for those in full time employment) or reduced (for PhD

and postdoctoral research students and other concessions). The deadline for registration is Monday July 29th 2019.

Cancellation Policy Delegates requiring a full refund should contact by Monday 5th August 2019.

Enquiries Queries regarding this conference can be made to

All information will be regularly updated on the Portsmouth website in the New Year.

Follow us on Twitter: @Ethnography_LK


We look forward to welcoming you to Portsmouth next August!