Master of Arts (MA)
Autoethnography, Backpacking, Computer Mediated Communication, Couchsurfing Hospitality Network, Maslow's Hierarchy of Needs, Uncertainty Reduction Theory
Communication | Communication Technology and New Media | International and Intercultural Communication
Santos, Anderson, "Citizens of the World: An Autoethnography of Couchsurfing and Uncertainty Reduction Theory" (2015). Masters Theses. 353.
This study examines through an autoethnography the culture of couchsurfing and the process of hospitality networks through computer mediated communication in five European countries during three months of 2012. Using Maslow's hierarchy of needs as a framework the study was divided into five topics and analyzed using Uncertainty reduction theory. The study found that couchsurfers have needs and prioritize these needs as The hierarchy of needs predicts. CouchSurfers also employ uncertainty reduction strategies similar to those used within computer mediated communication when choosing their host. Over 20 hosting experiences have been analyzed in this study. The field data was collected through personal journal entries, blog posts and photographs.