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Jeannine-Madeleine Fischer, M.A.

Dr. phil. Jeannine-Madeleine Fischer

Alumni / Researcher


LMU München
Institut für Ethnologie
Oettingenstr. 67
80538 München


Research project:
Member of the research group: „Urban Ethics. Conflicts around good and right urban lifestyle in the 20th and 21st century (2015-2018)“ (FOR 2101, funded by DFG)

Advisor: Prof. Dr. Eveline Dürr

Sub project: Auckland: Pollution, Urban Ethics and Cultural Practice

New Zealand is represented nationally and globally as an idyllic natural paradise; even urban agglomerations such as Auckland are associated with rural attributes implying purity, originality and naturalness. Existing environmental challenges in the country (waste management, use of dangerous pesticides and fertilizers) and in a specific urban context (pollution of air, water and soil) are far less present in the official representation. This study explores the ways urban residents perceive urban pollution in Auckland, the country’s biggest city. Particular interest is placed on the questions how city dwellers’ daily activity and decision making processes are shaped by perceptions of urban pollution.

The sub-project enquires after lived and conceived ideals of an urban, ecofriendly lifestyle in the most densely populated city of New Zealand. How do normative guidelines of urban behaviour shape social practices? Which urban symbols represent and produce clean and unclean places and which categories of urban space are constructed according to environmental criteria? We observe alternatives to the city's norms: for example cyclists who beard the „culture of cars“ in Auckland in spite of insecure bike lanes; hobby „upcyclers“ who create gourmet dishes, fancy fashion or colourful accessories out of allegedly worthless waste; city dwellers living in small one-room-apartments who grow their local food on their balcony, roof or at the community garden and reduce their residual waste through the modern bokashi composting system - in contempt of confined housing conditions.

The sub-project asks these questions in the context of the interdisciplinary research group „Urban Ethics. Conflicts around good and right urban lifestyle in the 20th and 21st century“ in order to explore dimensions of „urban ethics“ in association with other sub-projects.

Publications (96 KB)