portrait picture Helen Vaaks

Helen Vaaks, BSc MSc


Contact Details

Department of Social and Cultural Anthropology
Universitätsstraße 7, 1010 Vienna
NIG, 4th floor
Room: D0418

E-Mail: helen.vaaks@univie.ac.at
Homepage: helenvaaks.squarespace.com

Research Focus Areas

  • Audiovisual anthropology
  • care
  • human-nature relationship
  • nature conservation
  • cycling

Short Biography

Helen Vaaks is a visual ethnography PraeDoc at the Institute for Social and Cultural Anthropology of the University of Vienna. She is currently doing research in the project “Sorgeräume” in collaboration with the Ludwig-Boltzmann-Gesellschaft, where the term “care” and the process of transdisciplinary research in caring communities is explored using visual methods.
Vaaks was a student-intern at the Vienna Visual Anthropology Lab under the guidance of Sanderien Verstappen. There she explored cycling advocacies in Vienna and completed a short film “Frauen in Fahrt” about female empowerment through education, i.e. a cycling course for female immigrants. During her master’s, she was part of international trans-disciplinary team CONTOURS: Conservation, Tourism, Remoteness funded by ERA-NET Rus Plus. Within this project, she made a visual research, a short film, on why and how people care about nature, more specifically, about an endangered species freshwater pearl mussel in Estonia.