PD Dr Stefan Groth

Senior Research Fellow

Käte Hamburger Kolleg / Centre for Global Cooperation Research
Schifferstraße 44
47059 Duisburg

Phone: +49 (0)203 379-5267
Fax: +49 (0)203 379-5276
E-Mail: groth@gcr21.uni-due.de


09/2016 - 08/2021

University of Zurich

Department of Social Anthropology and Cultural Studies

Senior Researcher/Head Laboratory Popular Culture Studies

10/2015 - 08/2016

University of Bonn

Department for Cultural Anthropology

Postdoctoral Research and Teaching Fellow

06/2014 - 05/2015

University Duisburg-Essen

Centre for Global Cooperation Research

Postdoctoral Fellow

06/2011 - 05/2014

Göttingen University

Institute of Cultural Anthropology/European Ethnology

Postdoctoral Researcher

06/2008 - 05/2011

Göttingen University

Institute of Cultural Anthropology/European Ethnology

Junior Researcher / PhD student

Research Interests

  • Political Anthropology and Europeanization Studies
  • Narratology and Linguistic Anthropology
  • Cultural Heritage and Cultural Property
  • Methods in Empirical Cultural Studies
  • Anthropology of Sports

Current Projects

  • Europe from Outside and from the Margins: The Everyday Production of Europe in Borderlands and Non-European Contexts

  • Popular Narratives of the Political

  • The Everyday: Perspectives from Empirical Cultural Studies (Book Project)


  • German Society for Empirical Cultural Studies
  • Societé Internationale d’Ethnologie et de Folklore (SIEF), SIEF Working Groups Narrative Cultures; Cultural Heritage and Property
  • European Association of Social Anthropologists (EASA), EASA Networks Anthropology of Law, Rights and Governance (LAWNET); Linguistic Anthropology (ELAN)
  • DFG Network Competition (2014–2018)
  • DFG Network Experience (since 2021)


PD Dr Stefan Groth joined the research group 'Global cooperation and diverse conceptions of world order' in November 2021 and will be a Senior Research Fellow until April 2023.

Research Project at the Centre

Everyday Narratives of (De-)Legitimation: How Stories about Migration Policies and Expert Regimes are told in Everyday Contexts

From an anthropological perspective, the project analyzes how migration policies are narrated in everyday contexts. It asks how stories about global cooperation in migration provide insight into perceptions of expert regimes drafting migration policies, including their legitimacy or illegitimacy. While research on narrative in policy processes has increased significantly over the last couple of years, narratives in their everyday dimensions and performative aspects of stories have so far only been tangentially considered – especially in relation to processes of global cooperation. The project argues that the analysis of everyday narratives of migration policies (e.g., stories about supranational agreements about the distribution of refugees, about multilateral debates on the impact of climate change on migration and resulting migration flows, or about bilateral practices of immigration control at borders) and an ethnographic perspective can deepen our understanding of how the legitimacy of migration policies – and with it the expert regimes in which such polices are drafted or negotiated – is questioned or critiqued in everyday contexts.

Expertise and Consulting Work

  • Board Member, Research Network Cultural Citizenship (University of Zurich, Zurich University of the Arts, Zurich University of Applied Science), 2018–2021
  • Co-Speaker, Section Cultures of Work, German Society of Folklore (dgv), since 2017
  • Working Group Social Sciences, Faculty of Arts and Social Sciences, Zurich (2016–2021)
  • Delegate, Commission for Research and Promotion of Junior Researchers, Faculty of Arts and Social Sciences, Zurich (2017–2020)
  • Board Member, Institute for Archeology and Cultural Anthropology, University of Bonn (2015–2016)
  • Board Member, Center for Theory of Culture and Society, University of Göttingen, Germany (2010–2014)
  • Reviewer for Journals (Critical Discourse Studies, American Ethnologist, International Journal of Heritage Studies, Anthropological Journal of European Cultures, Narrative Culture, Zeitschrift für Volkskunde, Jahrbuch für Europäische Ethnologie)

Teaching Responsibilities

University of Zurich, Bonn, Göttingen and Basel (BA/MA level)

Seminars and Conferences

Morality as Organizational Practice. 19th Workshop of the Section Cultures of Work of the German Association of Cultural Anthropology and Folklore Studies (dgv), Freiburg, November 2021 (with Sarah May and Johannes Müske).

Vernetzt, entgrenzt, prekär? Arbeit im Wandel und in gesellschaftlicher Diskussion – kulturwissenschaftliche Perspektiven. 18. Arbeitstagung der dgv-Kommission Arbeitskulturen, 13. bis 14. September 2018, Zurich (with Sarah May and Johannes Müske).

Workshop Zusammenarbeit(en). Praktiken der Koordination, Kooperation und Repräsentation in kollaborativen Prozessen, 5.-6. Oktober 2017, Labor Populäre Kulturen, ISEK, Universität Zürich / Collegium Helveticum, Zürich (with Christian Ritter).

Internationaler Workshop Micro-Moves in International Institutions, Standing Group Sociology of International Relations (AK SiB) / Deutsche Vereinigung für Politische Wissenschaft, February 9-10, 2017, Universität Potsdam (with Katja Freistein and Alejandro Esguerra).

Interdisziplinärer Workshop Studying Micro-Practices in (International) Institutions: Chances and Limitations of Theory-Building, November 26-27, 2015, Centre for Global Cooperation Research (GCR), Duisburg  (with Katja Freistein and Alejandro Esguerra).

International Working Conference Justice in Discourse, April 4–5, 2013, Göttingen (with Regina Bendix and Charles Briggs).

Workshop „Subjektbegriffe der Europäischen Ethnologie“ (“Concepts of the ‘Subject’ in European Ethnology”), December 13-14, 2012, Göttingen (with Nadine Wagener-Böck).

Publications (Selection)

Groth, Stefan (2021). 'Kontingente Praxen, Antizipation als Kompetenz', in Ruth Dorothea Eggel, Fabio Freiberg, Andrea Graf, Dagmar Hänel, Victoria Huszka, Ove Sutter, and Kerstin Wolff (eds.), Planen, Hoffen, Fürchten: Die Gegenwart der Zukunft im Alltag, 13: 203–16. Bonner Beiträge zur Alltagskulturforschung. Münster: Waxmann.

Groth, Stefan (2020). 'Implicit Ethics: Normative Claims to Culture in Multilateral Negotiations', in Journal of Linguistic Anthropology 30(2): 179–95.

Groth, Stefan (2018). ’Comparison as Reflective and Affective Practice: Orientations Towards the Middle in Recreational Road Cycling’, in Cultural Analysis, Special Issue: Comparison as Social and Cultural Practice (edited by Stefan Groth), 18 (1): 63-75.

Groth, Stefan (2019). 'Vergleiche als antizipierende und relationale Praxis‘, in Zeitschrift für Volkskunde 115(2): 238–59.

Groth, Stefan (2019). 'Political Narratives / Narrations of the Political. An Introduction“. Narrative Culture. Special Issue: Political Narratives / Narrations of the Political, 6(1): 1–18.

Groth, Stefan (2018). ’Entstehungskontext, Materialität und Sprachspezifik. Elemente einer empirisch-kulturwissenschaftlichen Quellenkritik von Dokumenten in politischen Prozessen’, in Schweizerisches Archiv für Volkskunde, 114(1): 57–75.

Groth, Stefan (2012). ’Negotiating Tradition: The Pragmatics of International Deliberations on Cultural Property’, in Göttingen Studies in Cultural Property, 4.