Michael Guggenheim

Michael Guggenheim’ s work centers on the relationship between experts and lay people, the role of objects for this relationship and on methodical and theoretical innovation derived from the combination of science studies with sociological theory. Before studying civil protection and disasters he conducted studies of architecture and environmental experts, two other disciplines that deal with complex systems that integrate science and social science. Theoretically, he has been interested in integrating actor-network theory with a theory of functional differentiation. He is also engaged in art projects that link science and technology studies, ethnography and art (mostly together with Bernd Kräftner and Judith Kröll of shared inc.). Together with them, he works on a project entitled “In the Event Of… . Anticipatory and Participatory Politics of Emergency Provision”. He has studied in Zürich and Berlin and held visiting positions and at the CCA Montreal, Humboldt University Berlin, NYU, CEU Budapest and Akademie Schloss Solitude. He was also a member of the research group “Communicating Disaster” at the Center for Interdisciplinary Studies (ZiF) Bielefeld. He has published widely in the above areas. For other publications see his personal website.


Joe Deville

Joe Deville completed his PhD in 2011 in the sociology department at Goldsmiths. His focus in the Organising Disaster project is on exploring what can be learnt from the case of Swiss civil protection, including comparing its contemporary practices and organisational processes to those elsewhere. His broader research interests include the sociology of expertise, economic sociology, science and technology studies, and non-representational theory. Many of these are explored through his PhD thesis, ‘The Landscape of Consumer Credit Default: Tracing Technologies of Market Attachment’. This follows the changing calculative landscapes that heavily indebted and defaulting consumer credit borrowers in the UK move through, from periods of borrowing, to managing debts, to being confronted by debt collectors. In so doing, the thesis expands the scope of Actor-Network Theory (ANT) influenced approaches to the study of social life, exploring the opportunities and elisions within the ANT inflected ‘economization’ programme within economic sociology. Joe was a visiting scholar at the Centre on Organizational Innovation at Columbia University from January to March 2009. At Goldsmiths, he has also worked as a researcher at the Centre for Urban and Community Research and has taught in both the sociology department and the department of Professional and Community Education (PACE).

For a list of publication, see his personal website.

Zuzana Hrdlickova

Zuzana Hrdlickova is an anthropologist with a background in South Asian studies. Her interests include disaster, conflict, humanitarianism, development and social change. She completed her PhD in 2009 at the Charles University in Prague with her thesis ‘The Impact of Sri Lankan Civil War on the Social Status of Sri Lankan Tamil Women’. Zuzana has also researched the impact of globalization on the Irula tribal community in the Nilgiri Hills, South India. She worked as a humanitarian worker in disaster-relief and war contexts and has taught courses on Anthropology and Development at the Charles University. In the current ‘Organising Disaster’ project based at Goldsmiths, University of London, she is a post-doctoral researcher analysing the dissemination of disaster expertise in India and has been lecturing on the MA options course Social Life on the Brink.

Relevant publications:

(2011) ‘The Impact of the Sri Lankan Conflict on the Social Status of Tamil Women’. In:. D. Madavan, G.Dequirez and E. Meyer (eds): Les communautés tamoules et le conflit sri lankais, Paris 2011, L’harmattan, pp. 73-104

(2011) ‘Irula Society’. In: Encyclopaedia of the Nilgiri Hills. Paul Hockings (ed), Manohar Books, pp.: 832-835.

(2011) ‘Irula Religion’. Ibid., pp.: 442-45.

(2009) ‘Dynamics of Female Emancipation: The Case of Tamil Women and Sri Lankan Civil War’, In: Tomandl, Ivo (ed). Manuscripta Ethnologica, Prague, Charles University, Faculty of Arts, Institute of Ethnology, pp. 3-11.

(2008)  ‘Cultural Interpretations of Tamil Tigresses and Tamil Women Employed in Non Traditional Ways. Two New Phenomena in Tamil Sri Lankan Society’. In: Oriental Archive 76,  pp. 459-489.