Rick Delbridge, Markus Helfen, Andreas Pekarek, Gretchen Purser

Research output: Chapter in Book/Entry/PoemChapter


In this chapter, we underscore the enduring importance of research on work, workers, labour markets, and the places and spaces of work. We then examine the particular and valuable contributions that come from ethnographic research in providing detailed studies of work, particularly when these are situated and interpreted in their wider socio-political contexts. We discuss the key dimensions of ethnography before overviewing the contributions to the volume. The volume presents cutting-edge ethnographic research on contemporary worlds of work and the experiences of workers from a range of contexts including an alternative community, working online, the gig economy, and the hospitality industry. Alongside novel empirical chapters, the collection includes the reflections of ethnographers with regards to, for example, the experience as a young female management researcher working amongst journalists in a media firm, personal feelings of precarity within and beyond the field, and how to navigate the challenges of researching inequalities ethnographically.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Title of host publicationResearch in the Sociology of Work
PublisherEmerald Publishing
Number of pages8
StatePublished - Dec 12 2023

Publication series

NameResearch in the Sociology of Work
ISSN (Print)0277-2833


  • Ethnography
  • contemporary work settings
  • doctoral research
  • qualitative research methods
  • social relations of work/places
  • sociology of work

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Sociology and Political Science


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