The project SEXHUM (Sexual Humanitarianism: Migration, Sex Work and Trafficking) studies the relation between migration, sex work and trafficking in the global sex industry by analysing migrants’ own understandings and experiences of agency and exploitation.
SEXHUM (ERC CoG 682451) also investigates the impact of anti-trafficking and other humanitarian and social interventions targeting migrant sex workers in strategic urban settings in Australia (Melbourne and Sydney), France (Paris and Marseille), New Zealand (Auckland and Wellington) and the United States (New York and Los Angeles). Its main aim is to produce new concepts and data reflecting the perspectives and priorities of migrants working in the global sex industry in order to develop more efficient and ethical policies and social interventions addressing their needs.
In order to meet its aims and objectives the project hired 6 postdoctoral researchers for 36 months to undertake fieldwork in each of the 4 national settings of the project.
Each of the postdoctoral researchers will undertake a period of intensive 18 months immersion and social interaction with the research participants in their environment, which will be organized in three periods of 6 months, to maximize the duration of the fieldwork and opportunities for exchange with the research team.
The proposed research methodology draws upon a combination of qualitative methods: long-term participant observation, semi-structured interviewing, and art-science ethnographic filmmaking (ethnofiction). This methodological approach was adopted in order to enable the research team to observe and analyse the individual, social and intersubjective dimensions through which sex workers’ understandings of agency and exploitation emerge and evolve along the migration experience.
SEXHUM will have a duration of 4 years (2016-2020). It started on 1 October 2016 and is based at Kingston University, London (Department of Criminology and Sociology) and at Aix-Marseille University (LAMES – Mediterranean Laboratory of Sociology).
The project’s PI is Prof Nicola Mai (firstname.lastname@example.org)