Becoming part of a temporary protest organization through embodied walking ethnography

Amanda J. Lubit, Devon Gidley

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

5 Citations (Scopus)
367 Downloads (Pure)


Purpose - This paper examines the choices researchers confront and the sides they take in the study of conflict and temporary organizations. 

Methodology - The authors use walking and sensory ethnography to study Lyra’s Walk, a temporary protest organization for peace in Northern Ireland. 

Findings - This paper makes two arguments. First, walking and sensory ethnography can provide an inhabited understanding of organizing. The emotions experienced when studying organizations in conflict settings reveal the process of negotiating belonging within a temporary organization. Second, ethnographers memorialize the side of the conflict they study, even more so when an organization is temporary. Their predetermined finiteness requires alternative methodologies that can raise identification issues for researchers in the field. 

Research implications - This paper points to future opportunities by demonstrating possible uses of walking and sensory ethnography in organizational studies and by illustrating researcher challenges when conducting ethnography in informal temporary organizations.  

Originality/value - The paper contributes first through a novel use of walking ethnography to study organizations that demonstrates the impact of embodied emotions on data collection, interpretation, and findings. Second, we identify particular features of informal projects as a form of temporary organization.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)79-94
JournalJournal of Organizational Ethnography
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 17 Dec 2020


  • Social Movements
  • Walking ethnography
  • Temporary Organizations
  • Emotion
  • Conflict
  • Northern Ireland


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