The Bucharest Urban Anthropology and Ethnography Workshop

This text provides an overview of the main themes and topics discussed at The Bucharest Urban Anthropology and Ethnography Workshop which took place in May 2010. It brought together anthropologists, sociologists, architects, and urban planners - most of them working in the Romanian capital- to discuss the benefits and challenges of ethnographic fieldwork in (post-socialist) cities. The presentations and discussions focused on the methodological problems of doing fieldwork in urban contexts, the differences and continuities between rural and urban anthropology, the problems of scale in ethnographic analysis and the links between local and global processes in multi-sited urban research, the balance between urban (infra)structures and individual agency, the intricacies of and confusion of roles in fieldwork carried out ‘at home' and related problems of engagement and detachment, the continued relevance of the notion of ‘post-socialism', and the development of new methodologies to capture movement and the weaving of social relationships in urban contexts. The workshop aimed to achieve also a clearer and more self-assured positioning of anthropology and ethnography in the interdisciplinary urban studies field and to formulate useful links and fruitful interaction.

 Key Words: post-socialist cities, ethnography, urban anthropology, urban studies, research methodologies, Bucharest.