Applied Anthropology: Domains of Application

Applied Anthropology: Domains of Application

Applied Anthropology: Domains of Application

Applied Anthropology: Domains of Application

Synopsis

Applied Anthropology: Domains of Application, edited by Satish Kedia and John van Willigen, comprises essays by prominent scholars on the potential, accomplishments, and methods of applied anthropology. Domains covered in the volume include specific domains of development, agriculture, environment, health and medicine, nutrition, population displacement and resettlement, business and industry, education, and aging. The contributors demonstrate in compelling ways how anthropological knowledge, skills, and methodologies can be put to work in addressing social, economic, health, and technical problems facing societies today. With their genuine commitment to protecting the diversity and vitality of human communities, applied anthropologists working in real-life settings have and will continue to have a lasting impact on people around the world. The editors enrich the volume by providing introductory and concluding chapters that offer a detailed historical context for applied anthropology and an exploration of its future directions.

Excerpt

Satish Kedia and John van Willigen

Applied anthropology is conceived as the application of anthropological knowledge, methodology, and theoretical approaches to address societal problems and issues. The focus of this book is on how anthropologists put their skills to work in a variety of settings or domains to inform policy and to initiate action that alleviates some of the most pressing social, economic, health, and technological problems facing communities and organizations. Committed to protecting the diversity and vitality of human lifeways around the world, applied anthropologists play a central role in developing programs and projects that have a lasting impact on the lives of individuals and communities. The scope and variety of their research challenges prevalent stereotypes about anthropologists in popular cinema and culture, such as the adventurer Indiana Jones and the lone excavator wearing a pith helmet. Increasingly, many of those with postgraduate training in anthropology pursue careers in government, nongovernmental organizations (NGOs), or business rather than teaching at a university. According to a recent study, from 1977 to 1997 roughly one third of new PhD graduatesworked outside academia, often in applied domains, and in some years the figure was as high as 42 percent (Price 2001).

The work of applied anthropologists is interdisciplinary and involves a variety of stakeholders, including decision makers in government or corporations, NGOs, and other interest groups; scientific or technical experts; and leaders and members of communities and organizations. This intrinsic . . .

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