Ethnography Lab: Habib University Initiative

The Ethnography Lab at Habib University is a space designed for people who seek to understand how cultural forces shape people’s perceptions, practices, and habits. The Lab aims to open up folds of senses for a greater conceptual analysis, helps researchers to penetrate into social facts, and cultivates empathy and ethics towards interlocutors.

We live in a world, which is going through profoundly radical changes, altering the way we socialize with each other, communicate with cosmology, and interact with technologies and environment. Living inside a vortex of social and geological changes, the question we ask is how ethnographic research methods can play a concrete role in cultural analysis of shifts and ruptures. In postcolonial context like Pakistan, burdened by the colonial inheritance of injustices, such shifts have horrendous effects on a moral fabric of the society. Within this situation, the Ethnography Lab is driven by the following guiding questions:


  • How can ethnographic research methods offer concrete solutions to contemporary social, economic, and moral problems?
  • Does ethnographic methods offers techniques to study cosmological reality believed to be outside of modern notion of time and space?
  • What are the limitations and shortcomings of ethnographic methods?
  • Is it ethically and morally sound to observe others?
  • Does ethnographic fieldwork contains a potential for a political vision?