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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
Irene Moretti
Marit Hiemstra
Ruben Reus
Tim van de Meerendonk
Willem van Wijk


week theme lecture tutorials due
1 Contemporary Challenges to Ethical Research Apr 14, 9:15--11:00 none
2 Data, Data Everywhere Apr 21, 9:15--11:00 Apr 21--22 Assignment 1
3 Hacking Ethnography Apr 28, 9:15--11:00 Apr 28--29
4 The Ethics of Ethnography in Industry May 12, 9:15--11:00 none Assignment 2
5 Metrics, Impact and Academic Audit Cultures May 19, 9:15--11:00 May 19--20
6 The Open Imperative Jun 2, 9:15--11:00 Jun 2 Assignment 3

Please consult MyTimetable 🐓 for the schedule of your tutorial sessions.

All times CEST unless otherwise noted.


The required book for this class is Kimberly Kay Hoang, 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.