The Ethnofest Database of Ethnographic Films

The aim of the Ehnofest’s Ethnographic Film Database is to open up and organise the archive of the Athens Ethnographic Film Festival – that is, to provide easy and open access to a significant number of ethnographic films. We consider that these films -each one individually and all of them together as an archive- comprise an invaluable source of knowledge and information about human culture – and its study. For this reason, in 2016 we decided to organise and categorise the festival’s archive into a comprehensive and functional web database, in order to make it accessible to anyone who might be interested in it – students, researchers, teachers, professors, journalists etc.

For each film, there’s a corresponding information page in the database, which includes a summary of the film, a biographical note of its director, production data as well as the thematic categories within which the film is included. Additionally, in the occasion that the filmmaker has consented, the film will be available for viewing directly on its database page. In order to create a functional and easily searchable database, we have organised and categorised the films according to subjects and thematics which they address, depict or analyse, using a set of keywords which we consider to be central in the social sciences. Consequently, one might perform a search by using these keywords – a feature which we consider will make the database a significant research and teaching tool.

Our intention in creating this database of ethnographic films has been to respond positively and to actively contribute in the demand for open access to knowledge. We are taking this step hoping that our contribution is meaningful, in offering open and organised access to a particular kind of knowledge, ethnographic films, which we consider to be essential for the understanding of culture – as well as for the mutual understanding across cultures.


idrima-ioanni-latsiThe database project was funded by the John S. Latsis Public Benefit Foundation
as part of the Scientific Societies Support Program 2016.

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