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Course Information

This course revolves around data: what it consists of, what it can say and do, how to handle it responsibly, who defines it and who is defined by it. In our approach to each of these questions, we will combine ethical reflection with practical application of skills and tools. We will pay special attention to new forms of data generated in and by digital technologies, which are now nearly ubiquitous in ethnographic field sites and our own research practice.

Code : 6491av2et

ECTS : 5.0

Level : 100

Period : Semester 2, Block 2


Name Email
John Boy, PhD
Anna Notsu
Suzanne Naafs
Tim van de Meerendonk
Tom Legierse


unit theme lecture tutorials due
1 Contemporary Challenges to Ethical Research Apr 13, 9:15--11:00 Apr 17
2 Data, Data Everywhere Apr 20, 9:15--11:00 Apr 24 Assignment 1
3 Hacking Ethnography May 4, 9:15--11:00 May 8
4 The Ethics of Ethnography in Industry May 11, 9:15--11:00 May 22 Assignment 2
5 Data Management in Action May 25, 9:15--11:00 none
6 The Open Imperative Jun 1, 9:15--11:00 none Assignment 3

All times CEST.

Please consult MyTimetable 🐓 for the schedule of your tutorial sessions. Note: There are no tutorials on May 1.


The required book for this class is Kimberly Kay Hoang's Dealing in Desire (University of California Press, 2015). It is available electronically through the university library catalog. You will read this book at your own pace, aiming to complete it in time for assignment 3.

Other required and supplementary readings will be available for download.

Academic Integrity

This class adheres to Leiden University's regulations on academic integrity. According to the university, "Plagiarism is understood as presenting, intentionally or otherwise, someone else's words, thoughts, analyses, argumentations, pictures, techniques, computer programmes, etc., as your own work."

We will refer all suspected violations of these regulations to the examination committee. Be careful to properly cite all works you draw on in your assignments. The University Library offers tutorials and advice on what and how to cite.


This syllabus is a living document and may be adapted as the course progresses. You can keep track of changes in the timeline.