HCAS People Contact Information

    Fabianinkatu 24 (P.O. Box 4)
    00014 University of Helsinki

    Tel. +358 2 941 21735



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Ugo Corte

Erik Allardt Visiting Fellow, PhD (Sociology), Uppsala University, Sweden

Room 328


Helsinki Collegium for Advanced Studies
P.O. Box 4
FIN-00014 University of Helsinki

Tel +358-(0)2941 23264
Email ugo.corte (AT) helsinki.fi

Research interests

  • Creativity
  • Voluntary risk taking
  • Fun
  • Collaboraton
  • Small groups
  • Ethnography

Current research

Riding Culture: Collaborative Creativity, Risk-Taking, and Fun in Big Wave Surfing

In this ethnographic book project Corte investigates the social world of big wave surfing.
Grounded upon several winters of ethnographic work conducted on the North Shore of Oahu, Hawai’i, he traces the evolution of this activity. Then, he analyzes how technological advances led to breakthroughs within this world, as well as changes in terms of participation, risk-taking, and its professionalization. Taking a life course perspective, and a highly participatory approach, he also describes how individuals typically become involved in this pursuit, and how eventually some of them disengage from it. The project will advance our understanding of interpersonal processes within collaborative circles—small groups of friends involved in collaborative creativity, as well as contribute to the literature on voluntary risk-taking, the sociology of fun, ethnographic field methods, and the sociology of the body.