What makes you say that?

My passion in the lecture room lies in encouraging students to critically question received wisdoms, the scholarly literature and partisan political opinion by impressing upon audiences the values of an anthropological approach to generating knowledge and action: in-depth understanding of local particularities that derives from participation, observation and analysis “from below” rather than “from afar”.

I have taught Social Anthropology at universities around the world, including Switzerland, Finland, Turkey and Hungary. In addition to my core research areas, which focus on the political economy and ethnohistory of Chinese-Russian borderlands and post-socialism in Central Asia, I have designed and taught courses on a number of topics, ranging from the core theories and history of anthropology to more specific themes such as cartography, urban sociology and methodology in social science.

Currently, I am an Associate Researcher in Social Anthropology at the University of Bern. I am available to participate in joint research projects, as well as to design and teach seminars, lecture series and courses also at your university, educational institution or professional organisation.

My work has been commissioned by policy-generating think-tanks; and I have chosen to publish my ethnography through a publishing house in London with a track record of making social science commercially available for a broad readership. The research insight I have gained through fifteen years of fieldwork on the ground in Central Asia, Russia and China can be utilised in policy consulting and in one-to-one coaching for academics, writers and professionals working on, or within, Eurasia.

“The city as a site for intensified commercial linkages, artistic endeavour and opportunities for personal, technological and social innovation exudes a powerful draw, yet it is the notion of the city as a ‘state of mind’ that attracts or repels our attention.”
– Abstract for ‘Anthropology and the Cityscape’ (Autumn 2016)


>> For a complete list of courses I have taught, as well as more information on my research and academic interests, please visit my website at the University of Bern.




Teaching, research, consultancy and
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Explore my books and articles, from
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