WAPA Cares: Ethnography Meeting May 16, 6-8pm

  • 18 May 2017
  • 6:00 PM - 8:00 PM
  • Home of Greyson Harris: 4309 Kansas Ave. NW, Apt. B


Registration is closed


WAPA Cares Ethnography Meeting

Thursday, May 18th 6-8 p.m.

Home of Greyson Harris in Petworth

4309 Kansas Ave. NW, Apt. B 

*Blue house, second door on left

Washington, DC 20011

Feel free to bring snacks or drinks!


Current Working Purpose Statement Draft:

Voices of Virginians in 2017: Toward a Blueprint for Common Understanding

Voices of Virginians in 2017: Toward a Blueprint for Common Understanding offers an in-depth and easily accessible study of the perceptions, concerns, and conditions that are influencing the responses of individuals (representing different groups of Virginian’s) to the evolving policy proposals of the new administration. Using the swing state of Virginia as a pilotthis ethnography will explore the extent to which and how shared concerns have led to unexpected alliances and civic engagement despite other areas of disagreement. The aim is to construct a blueprint for facilitating common understanding and fostering civic engagement across diverse groups in Virginia. The study demonstrates the relevance of anthropological research methods for tackling issues of concern to policymakers, advocacy and interest groups, the mass media, and the general public as well as the university.


Construction of the blueprint would consist of: 


  • Listening to the voices of individual representing diverse political, religious, ethnic, racial, and socioeconomic groups in Virginia to identify issues of common concern across these groups.
  • Learning what individuals from different groups want and need from government, other institutions, and local organizations to improve their lives, as well as where they currently turn to try to meet their needs. 
  • Finding out how individuals from these different groups think and talk about the political process, how they decide to vote or not vote, and what motivates them to mobilize to support or oppose a policy or action or assist fellow citizens


  • Communicating directly with the public through social media, town hall meetings, and an interactive website complete with descriptive storytelling, statistical findings, and documentary photography.
  • Helping the resource-strained news media narrate a more nuanced story about voter dynamics and civic engagement through communications outreach and potential reporting partnerships.
  • Presenting the detailed research report findings and blueprint at academic fora. 

Research Questions

1.     Are there key issues and concerns that are shared across diverse groups of Virginians, despite their differences on other issues?

2.     What are individuals from these different groups seeking from the government, local organizations, and groups to help address these issues?

3.     How do individuals from these groups decide to engage in voting, mobilizing to support or oppose a policy issue, or assist fellow citizens?

Project Contact: juliennegage@gmail.com

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