Hege Høyer Leivestad
Hege Høyer Leivestad

Telephone: +46 (0)8 16 26 84
E-mail: hege.leivestad@socant.su.se
Room: B652

Hege Høyer Leivestad works as a researcher and lecturer in Social Anthropology. Leivestad has mainly worked at the intersections of mobility studies and materiality/material culture, and she has done fieldwork in Spain and Sweden. From 2018 Hege will work on an international postdoctoral project with London School of Economics and Political Science on maritime logistics and local experiences of global economy (funded by the Swedish Research Council).

Leivestad’s previous research examined issues of alternative homebuilding through a study of mobile homes and caravan dwellers in Europe. A monograph based on this work, “Caravans: Lives on Wheels in Contemporary Europe” will be published with Bloomsbury Academic (2018). Leivestad has previously worked on interdisciplinary environmental research in Norway. Research interests include mobility, materiality, infrastructure and economy.


Frontier Freight: Maritime Logistics at the Strait of Gibraltar

This project examines the movement of goods in a European maritime transport hub. Ports are critical nodes in a well-coordinated global trade system where 90% of commodities are transported by sea. Complex systems of logistics are created in order to move maritime freight as seamless and efficient as possible, but we know little about how logistical operations in ports actually work in practice. Examining maritime logistics ethnographically, that is in practice, offers a strategic lens for understanding how global mobility and capitalism are reconfigured in local contexts. The empirical focus of the project lies on the sociocultural context of maritime freight logistics at the Port of Algeciras Bay. This is one of Europe’s busiest and fastest growing commercial and passenger ports located at the Strait of Gibraltar, at the gateway between Europe and Africa. Algeciras is facing times of infrastructural development and increasing pressure on labour- and cost efficiency.

“Frontier Freight” is funded by the Swedish Research Council (2018-2021).

Caravan Homes in Contemporary Europe

Hege Høyer Leivestad’s PhD project dealt with a particular material object; the caravan and the way social life is constituted in and around it. The project explored the interrelations between mobility and material culture and how these are expressed in practices of caravan dwelling. Based on fieldwork on campsites; among British caravan migrants on the Spanish Costa Blanca and Swedish seasonal caravanners, as well as within the caravan industry, it looked closer at the formation and conflicts surrounding the mobile dwelling in today’s Western Europe. The domestic processes of caravan living, Leivestad’s work suggests, should be understood not only in terms of search for alternative forms of community, but also as a particular material withdrawal from national politics, and experienced constraints of conventional housing.

Pathways to Success: The Upcoming Elite among Descendants of Migrants in Sweden

(With Erik Olsson, and Alireza Behtoui)

This project deals with the career pathways and upward mobility of migrants in Sweden. It is quite clear that migrants and their descendants are far from being proportionally represented in the most influential spheres in the Swedish society. This project thus sets out to examine how so-called “successful” migrants – and children of migrants – deal with potential obstacles and advance into elite circles.

Selected publications


  • Leivestad, Hege Høyer. Caravans: Lives on Wheels in Contemporary Europe. London: Bloomsbury.
  • Leivestad, Hege Høyer. “Caravan Cultures: Second Homes on Wheels”, in Routledge International Handbook on Second Homes, (eds) Michael Hall and Dieter Müller. London: Routledge.


  • Leivestad, Hege Høyer. “Campsite Migrants: British Caravanners and Homemaking in Benidorm”, Nordic Journal of Migration Research 7 (3).
    In August 2018 chosen as best article published in the Nordic Journal of Migration Research during the two-year period between the Nordic Migration Research conferences.
  • Leivestad, Hege Høyer and Anette Nyqvist (eds). Ethnographies of Conferences and Trade Fairs: Shaping Industries, Creating Professionals. New York: Palgrave MacMillan.
  • Leivestad, Hege Høyer. “Beyond Informality: Intimacy and Commerce at the Caravanning Trade Fair”, in Ethnographies of Conferences and Trade Fairs: Shaping Industries, Creating Professionals, (eds) Hege Høyer Leivestad and Anette Nyqvist. New York: Palgrave Macmillan.
  • Nyqvist, Anette, Hege Høyer Leivestad and Hans Tunestad. ”Individuals and Industries: Large-Scale Professional Gatherings as Ethnographic Fields”, in Ethnographies of Conferences and Trade Fairs: Shaping Industries, Creating Professionals, (eds) Hege Høyer Leivestad and Anette Nyqvist. New York: Palgrave Macmillan.
  • Leivestad, Hege Høyer. “Inventorying Mobility: Methodology on Wheels”, in Methodologies of Mobility: Ethnography and Experiment, (eds) Alice Elliot, Roger Norum and Noel Salazar. Oxford: Berghahn Books.




Introductory course at undergraduate level, and supervision of bachelor students.

Research networks



  • Leivestad, Hege Høyer, 2016. “Traditional Customers: Domestic Aesthetics and a Moral Economy of Colors”. Presented in the panel “Color Politics: Agency, Evaluation, Materiality”, organised with Renita Thedvall (SCORE) at American Anthropological Association’s Annual Meeting, 16-20 November, Minneapolis.

  • Leivestad, Hege Høyer, 2016. Wheels Standing Still: the Mobile Dwelling in Present-Day Europe. Presented in the panel “The Government of the House, ‘Life’ and ‘The good Life’”. European Association for Social Anthropologists (EASA) 14th biannual conference. University of Milano-Bicocca, 20-23 July.


  • Leivestad, Hege Høyer. 2015. Caravan Homes in Contemporary Europe. Presented in the panel “Mobile Dwellings: Transportable Localities” organised together with Jeffrey Albanese (Michigan) and Allison Formanack (Colorado) at the American Anthropological Association Annual Conference, Denver, 18-22 November.
  • Leivestad, Hege Høyer. 2015. The Good Life and a Present Continuous. Presented at the Swedish Association for Social Anthropologists (SANT) Annual Conference. Lund, 17-19 April.


  • Leivestad, Hege Høyer. 2014. Caravan Commodities: ”Feeling Quality” at the Caravanning Trade Fair. Paper presented at the American Anthropological Association Annual Conference. Washington, December 3-7, 2014.
  • Leivestad, Hege Høyer. 2014. Disjunction: Caravans and the Complexities of Connections. Presented in the panel “Small Places, large issues: thinking through anthropological conundrums”. EASA 2014. European Association of Social Anthropologists 13th Biennial Conference. Tallinn University, Estonia. 31st July-3d August.


  • Leivestad, Hege Høyer. 2013. Mobility Keyword: Motility. Presented in the panel “Critical Anthropological Engagements with Mobility”. American Anthropological Association Annual Conference. Chicago, November 20-24, 2013.
  • Leivestad, Hege Høyer. 2013. Materiality of Mobility: methodology on Wheels. Presented at EASA Anthropology and Mobility Network Workshop: Fielding challenges, challenging the field: The methodologies of mobility. Oxford, September 27-28, 2013.


  • Leivestad, Hege Høyer. 2012. Ambiguity on wheels: Caravan Homes in Contemporary Europe. Presented at EASA, European Association for Social Anthropologists conference. Nanterre. Paris, July 10-13.
  • Leivestad. Hege Høyer. 2012. Hjem på hjul. Presented at Mediations joint conference Swedish Anthropological Association and Norwegian Anthropological Association. Stockholm, May 4-6.


  • Leivestad, Hege Høyer. 2008. Leisure Time Mobility - a qualitative study of mobility and transportation to leisure-time recreation areas in Norway. Presented at 17th Symposium in Tourism and Hospitality Research. Lillehammer, September 27.
  • Leivestad, Hege Høyer and Carlo Aall. 2008. Leisure time consumption: part of the problem or part of the solution to a sustainable development? Presented at SCORE, Sustainable Consumption and Production. Framework for Action. Brussels, March 10.
  • Leivestad, Hege Høyer. 2008. Framtidas Bönder er kommunikatorar. Presented at Forestillinger om Fellesskap. Norsk Antropologisk Årskonferanse. Oslo, May 23-25.

Public lecture

Leivestad, Hege Høyer. 2009. No pain- No glory. Pilegrimer og turister i Santiago de Compostela. Presented at Museum of Cultural History, Oslo. September 29, 2009.


Hege Høyer Leivestad has been interviewed in a range of Swedish and Norwegian newspapers, national radio and TV. A selection of media appearances is available on the Swedish website.

Information about past activities can be found in the Department’s previous Annual Reports.