Lauren Hayes

Lauren Hayes

Assistant Professor

FAB 3035


Lauren Hayes



Research interest(s)/area of expertise

  • Topical: economic and business anthropology, linguistic anthropology, gender, globalization, work transformation, technology, rural identity, labor mobility, development, precarious work

    Geographical: Appalachia and the US South, US, Latin America


Dr. Hayes is a cultural and linguistic applied anthropologist with interests in the anthropology of work, gender, globalization, and rural identity. Her research examines how systems of flexible and gendered labor are reproduced and the ways that individuals adapt to precarious economic and work conditions, new technology, and labor transformations. Funded by the Wenner-Gren Foundation and the Appalachian Studies Association, her ongoing research in the Appalachian region of the United States centers on high tech manufacturing and other tech-based workforce development projects. Previous research projects have focused on livelihood strategies among microloan borrowers in Honduras and the gendered dimensions of manufacturing work in Appalachian Kentucky.


  • Ph.D. Anthropology, The University of Arizona, 2017
  • B.A. Anthropology, Wake Forest University, 2006

Awards and grants

  • Wenner Gren Foundation for Anthropological Research, Post-Ph.D. Research Grant, Creating ‘Silicon Holler:’ High-Tech Labor Transformation in the Coalfields of Appalachia (2018-2019)

    National Endowment for the Humanities (NEH) and the Appalachian Studies Association (ASA) Wilma Dykeman Faces of Appalachia Post-Doctoral Research Fellowship, Creating “Silicon Holler”: High-Tech Labor Transformation and Shifting Gender Dynamics in the Coalfields of Appalachia (2018)

    Marshall Foundation Dissertation Fellowship, Louise Foucar Marshall Foundation and the University of Arizona Graduate College, (2016-2017)

    Berea College Appalachian Sound Archives Fellowship, Appalachian Women in the Modern Workplace (2014-2015)

    Wenner Gren Foundation for Anthropological Research, Dissertation Fieldwork Grant, Shaping the Ideal Worker: Power, Gender, and Responsibility on the Production Line in Appalachian Kentucky (2013-2014)

Selected publications

Language and Culture in Workplace Ethnography. Oxford Research Encyclopedia of Anthropology. Forthcoming.

High-Tech Futures in “Silicon Holler.” Journal for the Anthropology of North America. 22(2) Fall: 96-99. doi: 10.1002/nad.12099, 2019.

Managing Dirt: disciplines of cleanliness and contamination at a Kentucky auto parts factory. Ethnos. May. doi:10.1080/00141844.2019.1614642., 2019.

Is High-tech Manufacturing Resocialing Work in Appalachian Kentucky? Anthropology of Work Review. 39 (1) June. doi: 10.1111/awr.12132, 2018.

Mobile and Temporary: Women and Workplace Precarity in Appalachian Kentucky. Journal of Appalachian Studies. Vol. 24, No.1. doi:10.5406/jappastud.24.1.0026. 2018.

The Hidden Labor of Repayment: Women, credit, and strategies of  microenterprise in northern Honduras. Economic Anthropology. Vol. 4, p. 22-36. doi: 10.1002/sea2.12070, 2017.

Notes from the Field: Navigating the Role of Researcher at a Factory Fieldsite in Appalachian Kentucky. Arizona Anthropologist Vol. 24, p. 42-50, 2015

Currently teaching

  • ANTH 3150 – Business Anthropology
    ANTH 5700 – Applied Anthropology