Caught in Collaboration
This essay is based on ethnographic work conducted as part of a bioethics study and blood sample collection initiative within the International Haplotype Map Project sponsored by the National Institute of Health and the National Human Genome Research Insitute. The study entitled „Indian and Hindu Perspectives on Genetic Variation Research” consisted in undertaking community consultations with the population of Indian Gujaratis in Houston in order to understand community perspectives on genetics, develop „culturally appropriate” recruitment strategies and consent documents, and, finally, collect blood samples. The article exemplifies how this new kinds of collaboration, in this case with scientists, are shaping anthropological research and fieldwork methods.
Keywords: community consultation, collaboration, HapMap project, bioethics, ethnography, fieldwork.