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The Interface commission promotes engagement and aims to increase the visibility of anthropology in the public sphere. It seeks to foster communication and collaboration among anthropologists and broader public. It aims to transform the ways anthropologists process and mediate new knowledges on ground. 


We seek to give engaged anthropology in Switzerland a voice and a face through a multitude of diverse projects by showcasing them on this multi-media platform in multi-modal ways, so to encourage broader public engagement.




  • To serve as a platform for discussing and exchanging ideas on how to make anthropology more visible and relevant for public debates, as well as to discuss the challenges and risks of engaged anthropology.

  • To showcase projects from all over Switzerland but also internationally in which anthropologists cooperate with public actors.

  • To serve as a platform for discussing and implementing ideas on the ways the institutions of anthropology can be transformed ; that they speak more to the needs of the student body and broader public.

  • Delivering resources that would help anthropologists to deal with challenges of engaged anthropology. For example, how to interact with the media, etc.? How to write a media text?

  • To serve as a collection of resources, a pool of up to date information and visionary ideas.

  • To engage within the political, applied and multi-modal ways of anthropology.

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Organising  Members

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Peter Bille Larsen

Lectures in anthropology, heritage, sustainability and governance at the University of Geneva. Primary fieldwork sites include the Peruvian Amazon, VietNam...

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Susan Riva

is a mediator and social scientist. She studied International Affairs in Boulder, Colorado and Mediation at the Kurt Bösch University Institute, now the University of Geneva’s Valais Campus....

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Eda Elif Tibet

a postdoctoral researcher at the institute of Geography, uni Bern, a visual and multimodal anthropologist, she filmed and directed award winning documentary films under her own label KARMAMOTION, a non hierarchical collective  of storytellers co-creating narratives for regenerative and just systems...

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Doris Bacalzo

is an associate researcher at the Department of Social and Cultural Anthropology, University of Lucerne. She has extensive research experience in the Philippines and Papua New Guinea. Her broad research interests are on the political economy of gender, kinship, childhood, inequalities, migration, social transformation... 


Leila Barrachini

holds a PhD in Social Anthropology and Art Theory from the University of Neuchâtel and the EHESS. Her researches focus on the commodification of culture and identity, on the work of mediation and translation involved in the making of contemporary indigenous arts....

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Fiona Siegenthaler

is an art historian and social anthropologist with a specialization in the interdisciplinary field of contemporary African art, performance, and visual culture. She is a Research Associate at the Visual Identities, Art, and Design Research Center (University of Johannesburg)...

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Patrik Naef

is a senior research associate at the University of Geneva. As a trained anthropologist and a cultural geographer, he is conducting research on collective memory; violence and criminal governance; the transformation of cities and the critical approaches to ‘resilience’...

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Claire Vionnet

is an Anthropologist, Dance Scholar and Dancer. She wrote a PhD on the creation of gestures in contemporary dance, exploring notions of body, improvisation, senses, shadow/ghost, production processes, autoethnography, phenomenology (University of Lausanne, 2018)...

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Mo Bleeker

Works at the Federal Department of Foreign Affairs, Switzerland since 2003, where she acts as Swiss Special Envoy for Dealing with the Past and atrocity Prevention. Mô combined work abroad in conflict contexts with numerous activities in Switzerland in the field of integration of marginalised adults...

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Annina Aeberli

is a researcher and environmental activist. She holds a bachelor degree in Geography with a minor in Social Anthropology from the University of Zurich and a master degree in Development Studies from the Graduate Institute Geneva.She also completed a degree in intercultural mediation....

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Laure Sandoz

currently works as a postdoctoral researcher at the Institute of Geography, University of Neuchâtel. She is part of the NCCR On the Move, an interdisciplinary project financed by the Swiss National Science Foundation, which aims to enhance the understanding of contemporary migration patterns....


Dilyara Suleymanova

is an anthropologist working at the School of Social Work, Zurich University of Applied Sciences. She currently leads a project, financed by the SNF Ambizione program...

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Isabel Kaser

is a Visiting Fellow at the LSE and a lecturer at the University of Bern. She works on the intersection of gender, conflict, migration and body politics, with a background in postcolonial and transnational feminist theory. She completed her PhD at the School of Oriental and African Studies (SOAS), where she wrote a feminist ethnography on the Kurdish Women's Freedom Movement.

Shabih Zaidi

A Cultural Anthropologist with a passion for building connections through embracing diversity. Her PhD research on Globally Mobile Intellectual Capital probes the everyday lives of Corporate Executives and their families through sensorial narratives; using the senses to connect and create a sense of belonging in the corporate and private spheres. 

Mike Poltorak

Dr Mike Poltorak is a social, medical and visual anthropologist and has researched in Tonga, New Zealand, UK, Germany and Sweden and published widely on themes related to vaccination, traditional healing, mental illness, public psychiatry and teaching visual anthropology. He has produced four ethnographic documentaries...


Lea Helfenstein

 studied cultural sciences with major anthropology in her Bachelor in Lucerne. She is a member of the SAA Board as the student representative of the german speaking students in Switzerland. Together with Sarah Keller Lea launches the Student Forum, an organization with the aim of connecting, networking, exchanging and collaborating with and amongst anthropology students in Switzerland.

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Sonia Mendes

Sonia Mendes is studying history and social anthropology at the University of Fribourg. She is currently member of the SAA Board as the student representative of the french speaking students in Switzerland. Captivated by epistemological questions, she tries to deepen the possibilities given by approaches of reflexivity in her studies. 


Sarah Keller

Sarah Helena Keller is currently in her Bachelors studying Social Anthropology with a minor in Indology at the University of Zürich. She is interested in bridging the distance between academic and engaged anthropology...

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