Researchers are constantly rethinking the methods they work with and deploy. This page includes links to online resources to help with thinking through ethical and practical questions that arise. 


This section includes readings to help researchers re-orient from face-to-face fieldwork towards digital research

Barratt, M. J., & Maddox, A. (2016). Active engagement with stigmatised communities through digital ethnography. Qualitative research, 16(6), 701-719.

Beaulieu, A. (2004). Mediating ethnography: Objectivity and the making of ethnographies of the internet. Social Epistemology 18, 139-163. 

Bhambra, G.K. and de Sousa Santos, B. (2017) Introduction: Global Challenges for Sociology, Sociology. 51 (1): 3-10

Boellstorff, T, Nardi, B, Pearce, C. (2012). Ethnography and virtual worlds: A handbook of method. Princeton: Princeton University Press.

Braun, V., Clarke, V., & Gray, D. (Eds.). (2017). Collecting Qualitative Data: A practical guide to textual, media and virtual techniques. Cambridge University Press. 

Burrel, J. (2009). The field site as a network: A strategy for locating ethnographic research. Field Methods 21, 181-199.

Coleman, E. G. (2010). Ethnographic approaches to digital media. Annual review of anthropology, 39. 

Fielding, N. G., Lee, R. M., & Blank, G. (eds.). (2008). The SAGE handbook of online research methods. 2nd Edition. Sage.
[Goldsmiths access]
Chapter 36: Online Research Methods and Social Theory
Chapter 11: Online Survey Design
Chapter 24: Online Interviewing
Chapter 25: Online Focus Groups
Chapter 32: Engaging Remote Marginalized Communities using Appropriate Online Research Methods

Garcia, Angela Cora, Alecea I. Standlee, Jennifer Bechkoff & Yan Cui 2009. Ethnographic approaches to the internet and computer-mediated communication. Journal of Contemporary Ethnography, 38, 52-84.

Hesse-Biber, S. N. (Ed.). (2011). The handbook of emergent technologies in social research. Oxford University Press.

Hine, C. (2015). Ethnography for the internet: Embedded, embodied and everyday. Bloomsbury Publishing. 

Hine, C. (2000) Virtual ethnography. London: Sage.

Kozinets, Robert V. (2015) Netnography: Redefined. 2nd Edition. London: Sage.

Lo Iacono, V., Symonds, P., & Brown, D. H. (2016). Skype as a tool for qualitative research interviews. Sociological Research Online, 21(2), 1-15.

Madianou, M. (2014). Smartphones as Polymedia. Journal of Computer-Mediated Communication, 19(3), 667-680. doi: 10.1111/jcc4.12069

Markham, A. N. (2013). Fieldwork in social media: What would Malinowski do? Qualitative Communication Research, 2(4), 434-446. 

Markham, A. N., & Baym, N. K. (Eds.). (2008). Internet inquiry: Conversations about method. Sage Publications.

Payne, R. (2014). Frictionless Sharing and Digital Promiscuity. Communication and Critical/Cultural Studies, 11(2), 85-102.

Pink, S., Horst, H. A., Postill, J., Hjorth, L., Lewis, T., & Tacchi, J. (Eds.). (2016). Digital ethnography: Principles and practice. SAGE. 

Suchman, L, Gerst, D & Krämer, H (2019). ‘“If you want to understand the big issues, you need to understand the everyday practices that constitute them”: Lucy Suchman in Conversation With Dominik Gerst & Hannes Krämer‘, Forum Qualitative Sozialforschung, vol. 20, no. 2.

The Journal of Digital Social Research just published a special issue on “Doing Digital Ethnography: Private Messages from the Field” – all articles are open access 

Ugoretz, K. (2017). A Guide to Unobtrusive Methods in Digital Ethnography



Lecture by Nirmal Puwar on Oral History for Public Culture. A CHASE course for doctoral students on methods and exhibitions

Lecture by Lucy Suchman on Feminist Research at the Digital/Material Boundary

Lecture by Linda Tuiwahi Smith on Decolonising Methodologies, 20 Years on (organised by the Sociological review)

Short video of Les Back on the sociology of walking

Lecture by Scottish Graduate School of Social Science on Approaching Virtual Ethnography

Special Issues

Feminist Internet Research Network

Feminist Review special issue on Feminist Methods is free to view for two months (from 25th March 2020)

Blog post from Noortje Marres about digital sociology

Big Data and Society journal blog

ADA Journal for New Media & Technology #13: Radical Feminist Storytelling and Speculative Fiction: Creating new worlds by re-imagining hacking

MAI Issue #4: Feminist New Materialist Practice – The Mattering of Methods


Library Genesis

Sci-Hub:  the first website in the world to provide mass & public access to research papers

MIT Press: Goldsmiths’ Library has set up a trial with MIT Press for access to their ebooks. Check out if your university library might be doing something similar.  This trial expires on the 31st of May. The ebooks also won’t show up on a standard Library Search –   students can only access it through this proxy link  and not via Shibboleth/institutional log-in.

A-Z of e-Resources: This is a handy list by Goldsmiths Library of e-journal databases, on-line indexes and bibliographic databases.

Public Books:  This site provides links to academic presses and university libraries that have made their resources freely accessible online temporarily, in response to the Covid-19 emergency.

Z Library:  The world’s largest ebook library.


This section lists resources for doing ethical digital research and how to get consent for online research.

O’Connell Davidson. J. (2008) If no means no, does yes mean yes? Consenting to research intimacies. History of the Human Sciences, 21(4): 49-67


An article based on a survey of UK adults, entitled Perceptions and behavioural responses of the general public during the COVID-19 pandemic: A cross-sectional survey of UK Adults

A podcast, What does the coronavirus pandemic sound like?, by international academics.

The Conversation, an online site for short, accessible, academic articles, has a regularly updated section on Covid-19.

A call from Mass Observation to become a Mass Observer and document your daily experiences of Covid-19. 

A short article by Iris van der Tuin, Professor of Cultural Inquiry, on methods and time.

A themed page of articles on Covid-19 as a media pandemic on In Media Res.

An article, published in Nature, on the need for science to rethink notions of objectivity in research.

British Sociological Association Online Symposium: Sociology On and Beyond the COVID-19 Crisis (24th April 2020).

LA Review of Books, The Quarantine Files: Thinkers in Self-Isolation, essays from academics and cultural commentators.

Solidarity and Care During the Covid19 Pandemic – a public platform supported and produced by The Sociological Review that documents and reports on the lived experiences, caring strategies and solidarity initiatives of diverse people and groups across the globe during the COVID19 pandemic.

Discover Society – the Covid-19 Chronicles. Essays on the pandemic from sociological perspectives.


This section includes research projects and collectives who use digital methods to collate data and produce toolkits, archives, podcasts and other open access resources

Covid Creatives Toolkit, A set of curated mostly free & open source resources to support creative practitioners (artists, makers, curators, designers, hackers, educators, facilitators, etc) who need to migrate their practice onto digital places & spaces. Crowdsourced kit initiated by Kat Braybrooke

Doing Fieldwork in a Pandemic, Crowdsourced document initiated by Deborah Lupton, UNSW.

Collaboratively produced LSE Digital Ethnography Reading List (March 2020)

The Earliest Political Memories Archive is an example of using crowdsourcing methods for memory work. The Children’s Photography Archive holds the curated images from the ERC Connectors Study. Both are examples of creating archives but can also be used (with acknowledgement) for secondary data analysis.


This section includes multi-media resources oriented around social science methods 

Methods Space, Sage Publishing methods community space

IJSRM, International Journal of Social Research Methodology


This section includes research labs and centres that are using a range of digital, practice research and creative methods

Brexit Brits Abroad, Goldsmiths, UK

Centre for Mobilities, Lancaster University UK

Childhood Publics and Childhood Photography Archives, Goldsmiths UK

CLEAR: Civic Laboratory for Environmental Action Research, Canada

DERC: Digital Ethnography Research Centre, RMIT Australia

POP: Politics of Patents ERC Research Group and POPLab, Goldsmiths, UK

Somatosphere, A collaborative website covering the intersections of medical anthropology, science and technology studies, cultural psychiarty, psychology and bioethics, including posts on Covid-19

The UnMaking Studio, Sweden


Videos from Goldsmiths sociology staff and students, present and past, on the objects, materials, media, atmospheres they do methods with.

Evelyn Ruppert: BIG DATA

Jess Perriam: COFFEE

Monika Kraus: DOCUMENTS

Nirmal Puwar: FILM

Les Back: MUSIC

Marina da Silva: A BUILDING

Kat Jungnickel: COSTUME

Michael Guggenheim: AN EXPERIMENT

Alex Rhys-Taylor: A MANGO

Rebecca Coleman: POSTCARDS