Dr. Ann Oberhauser


Office:217b East Hall
510 Farm House Ln.
Ames IA

Topics of interest: Critical development studies, Feminist Methodology, Gender and globalization


Dr. Ann Oberhauser is Director of Women’s and Gender Studies and Professor of Sociology at Iowa State University. Her research focuses on feminist economic geography, gender and globalization, and critical development studies with an emphasis on rural economic strategies in Appalachia, sub-Saharan Africa, and more recently Iowa. She holds a PhD in Geography from Clark University and, before moving to Ames, Iowa, was Professor in the Department of Geology and Geography at West Virginia University. Her co-authored book, Feminist Spaces: Gender and Geography in a Global Context, was published by Routledge in 2017. She also co-edited a book with Ibipo Johnston-Anumonwo, Global Perspectives on Gender and Space, in 2014.

Oberhauser's SCHOLARSHIP draws heavily from feminist qualitative research and fieldwork that engages with community-based networks and women’s roles in rural development in the global South and global North. She has also engaged with critical pedagogy in her teaching and research. This scholarship and praxis explores the effectiveness of experiential learning or Global Service Learning (GSL) in programs she has led to Tanzania. (ACME Journal of Critical Geographies 2019)

Recently, Oberhauser has collaborated with Sociology colleagues on a project exploring the political culture in Iowa and specifically how populism and nativism are evident in recent elections. (The Sociological Quarterly 2019) doi:10.1080/00380253.2019.1580543

Ongoing collaborations with colleagues in feminist geography include work on the role of mentoring among women geographers and the impacts of neoliberalization in academia. (Geografiska Annaler 2019 and Gender, Place & Culture 2019)

Oberhauser has also been involved in a multi-disciplinary project on the use of social media among college students with colleagues in psychology and communication studies. This research analyzes how computer-mediated communication (CMT) impacts students’ attachment to family and friends. See their chapter in The Psychology of Social Networking: Communication, Presence, Identity and Relationships in Online Communities (2015)

Her TEACHING specialties include feminist theory and research, gender and globalization, development studies, and gender and work. These graduate and undergraduate courses are offered in the Department of Sociology and Women’s and Gender Studies at Iowa State.

In OUTREACH AND SERVICE, Dr. Oberhauser is a member of the International Geographical Union Commission on Gender and currently serves as the treasurer of this organization. She is also active in the Feminist Geographies Specialty Group of the American Association of Geographers. At Iowa State University, Oberhauser serves on several committees including the University Committee for the Advancement of Women and Gender Equity, the Women’s Leadership Consortium, and the Committee on Diversity and Inclusion in the College of Liberal Arts and Sciences.

Recent publications:  

Hanrahan, Kelsey and Ann M. Oberhauser (in press) “Redefining our identity, recognizing our challenges: GPOW becomes the Feminist Geographies Specialty Group.” The Professional Geographer.

Loomis, Jessa M. and Ann M. Oberhauser (2020) “Feminist engagement with the economy: Spaces of resistance and transformation.” In A. Datta, P. Hopkins, L. Johnston, E. Olson and J. M. Silva (eds.) Routledge Handbook of Gender and Feminist Geographies, p. 118-128. New York, NY: Routledge.

Oberhauser, Ann M. and Martina Angela Caretta (2019) “A space for feminist mentoring: The role of Geographic Perspectives on Women (GPOW) Specialty Group in higher education.” Gender, Place and Culture 26 https://doi.org/10.1080/0966369X.2019.1660310

Oberhauser, Ann M. (2019) “Transformation from Within: Practicing Global Education through Critical Feminist Pedagogy.” ACME: An International Journal for Critical Geographies. 18 (3): 751-67.