Joanna Menet

Post-doctoral researcher

I am a social anthropologist and post-doctoral researcher at the Laboratory for the Study of Social Processes at the University of Neuchâtel. I work at the intersections of migration/mobility, transnationalism, gender and dance. My empirical approach encompasses qualitative research methods, including multi-sited fieldwork, participant observation, semi-structured interviews as well as embodied research. I also have a strong interest in academic writing and creative tools in the teaching of writing.

My doctoral thesis develops a theoretical framework to study ‘the salsa circuit’, taking into account the embodied doings of salsa dancers well as ‘regimes of mobility’ and individuals’ different positions in a transnational field. Through the entry point of salsa dancing, the dissertation explored the circulation of people, imaginaries, dance movements, conventions and affects from a transnational perspective. In particular, it examined the negotiations of gender and ethnicity and analyzed the transnational careers of salsa dance professionals.

In my current research I look at how migrant descendants negotiate claims of ‘otherness’ and belonging, as part of a project titled ‘Gender as a Boundary Marker in Migration, Citizenship and Belonging: Case Studies from Switzerland and beyond’ within the NCCR-on the move. Before that, I was engaged as a teaching assistant and participated in the teaching activities for Master and Bachelor students. Prior to joining the University of Neuchâtel, I was a researcher at the Swiss Forum for Migration Studies (SFM), working on Swiss migration policy and federalism. I hold a Masters Degree in Social Anthropology from the University of Zurich.


Research interests

Mobility and migration, Ethnicity, Gender, Dance, Qualitative methods, Writing


Wichmann, Nicole, Michael Hermann, Gianni D’Amato, Denise Efionayi-Mäder, Rosita Fibbi, Joanna Menet und Didier Ruedin (2011). Gestaltungsspielräume im Föderalismus: Migrationspolitik in den Kantonen. Bern-Wabern: Eidgenössische Kommission für Migrationsfragen.

Menet, Joanna und Nicole Wichmann (2012). Die schweizerische Integrationspolitik zwischen Fördern und Fordern. In: Integration per Unterschrift? Zweckmässigkeit von Integrationsvereinbarungen im Migrationsrecht. Tagungsdokumentation. Konstanzer Wissenschaftsforum, pp. 13-19.

Achermann, Alberto, Christin Achermann, Joanna Menet und David Mühlemann (2013). Das Zulassungssystem für religiöse Betreuungspersonen. Eine explorative Studie. Im Auftrag des Bundesamts für Migration.


Université de Neuchâtel
Rue A.-L. Breguet 1
2000 Neuchâtel

bureau 316 (3ème étage)
tél. +41 32 718 14 93
Fax +41 32 718 14 21