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Message posted on 01/10/2021

CALL FOR PAPERS - "Examining Collaborations in Molecular Research Infrastructures" panel at the RAI Mobilising Methods in Medical Anthropology conference - 18-21 January 2022

                Dear Colleagues,

We invite submissions to our panel Examining collaborations in molecular
research infrastructures which will take place as part of the Royal
Anthropological Institutes Mobilising Methods in Medical Anthropology online
conference, 18-21 January 2021.

Our panel explores novel and existing collaborations between biomedicine and
the social sciences in the field of molecular genetics.  In particular, it
explores the potential and limits of ethnography in such collaborations,
asking what does ethnography afford in the study of and participation in these
collaborations?  Further details below.

The Deadline for proposed papers is 25 October 2021

The conference will be held online on 18-21 January 2022

All proposals must be made via the online form, found here:

For further details about the conference visit

Please note: Papers that are not accepted for the panel might be considered by
the Conference Committee for their fit in the wider conference programme.
However, there is no guarantee that such papers can be re-housed.

We look forward to receiving your proposals.

Best wishes,

Ignacia Arteaga and Henry Llewellyn


Examining collaborations in molecular research infrastructures (P13)
Ignacia Arteaga (University of Cambridge) and Henry Llewellyn (University
College London)

While research collaborations in genomics might generally be confined to the
biomedical sciences, they increasingly include associations with social
scientists. We ask: What does ethnography afford in the study of and
participation in these collaborations?

Contemporary research on cancer, dementia and rare diseases, among others,
cultivates understandings of disease aetiology and prevalence based upon
analysis of genomic data,' further envisioning these conditions at a
molecular level. These innovations increasingly rely on multidisciplinary
kinds of expertise and pools of resources distributed across complex
transnational infrastructures. While research collaborations might be confined
to disciplines traditionally understood to lie beneath the mantle of the
'biomedical sciences,' they also include new associations with the social
sciences. These research practices not only give rise to novel disease
categories and other forms of biological and social stratification, but they
also inform novel requirements and expectations of and for new stakeholders
and patient subjects. In this panel, we invite submissions which address the
following concerns, among others: How do biomedical and social scientists
variously imagine multidisciplinary collaborations within the molecular turn?
How can ethnographic research methods be mobilised to better understand these
collaborations and what can they offer? How can ethnography be used
reflexively to examine stakeholders understandings of its potential to enrich
collaborations in molecular research? How could we craft ethnographic voice(s)
that highlight how stakeholders imagine, maintain and contest borderlands
between science and society? What tensions emerge when negotiating competing
disciplinary norms and epistemic categories in these collaborations?

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