Mobile Subjects, Mobile Methods: Doing Virtual Ethnography in a Feminist Online Network


  • Michaela Fay University of Newcastle upon Tyne



mobility, transnational feminism, belonging, university, nomadism, women's studies


In this article I give an account of my cyberethnographic study of the International Women's University "Technology and Culture" (ifu) 2000 and the network its participants formed in the ifu's virtual extension, vifu. The article offers a description of the methodological considerations and challenges I was confronted with whilst carrying out this research. In addition, I explore these methodological considerations on a conceptual level. Primarily concerned with questions of home and belonging and the question of how these notions figure in contemporary mobile lives, I explore here how conducting online research became the only possible method to adequately reflect the "mobile" nature not only of the event ifu and its virtual extension vifu, but also the ways in which participants negotiate belonging and mobility in their respective worlds and to the (v)ifu network. URN: urn:nbn:de:0114-fqs0703141


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Author Biography

Michaela Fay, University of Newcastle upon Tyne

Michaela FAY has a PhD in Women's Studies from Lancaster University, UK. Most of her research has explored the concepts of home, belonging and mobility through a feminist theory lens. She is currently working on a research project on Organisational Change, Resistance and Democracy in LGBT Equalities Initiatives in Local Government at Newcastle University, UK.




How to Cite

Fay, M. (2007). Mobile Subjects, Mobile Methods: Doing Virtual Ethnography in a Feminist Online Network. Forum Qualitative Sozialforschung Forum: Qualitative Social Research, 8(3).



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