AAA Backs National Adjunct Walkout and Awareness Day

Written by American Anthropological Association President, Dr. Monica Heller and Executive Director, Dr. Edward Liebow Today, February 25, 2015 is “National Adjunct Walkout and Awareness Day,” a day when adjunct and contingent faculty at American colleges and universities are being encouraged to remain away from their teaching responsibilities or otherwise call attention to the unfair … Continue reading AAA Backs National Adjunct Walkout and Awareness Day

National Geographic Channel International Cancels “Nazi War Diggers”

To AAA members: This letter was sent on March 31st, 2014, to the National Geographic Society, National Geographic Channels and National Geographic Channel International to protest a program aired in Europe (with a trailer briefly available on YouTube), by the presidents of six anthropological and archeological associations based in the United States and Europe, including … Continue reading National Geographic Channel International Cancels “Nazi War Diggers”

Anthropologists Approve Comprehensive Overhaul of Ethics Code

After a five-year review process, members of the American Anthropological Association have approved a rigorous overhaul of their ethics code.  The code offers guidance to anthropologists as to how they should conduct themselves in professional and academic settings, in collecting and disseminating research data, and in their relationships with research subjects, colleagues and students.  The new document, titled “Statement on Ethics: Principles of Professional Responsibility,” strengthens the previous ethics code, adapts it to the digital age, and makes use of a fundamentally new format.  Members were given six weeks to vote on the code, which was approved by an overwhelming 93 percent of those who voted.

The first AAA ethics code was written in 1971, in response to controversies over the Vietnam War. Where previous AAA ethics codes resembled straightforward legal codes, the new Principles of Professional Responsibility take the form of a hyperlinked living document in a simple, user-friendly format.  While still offering guidance for ethical conduct in the form of general principles, the new document features embedded hypertext links to pertinent case study materials, reference documents, websites and articles. The Statement has a series of references after each defining principle to allow the readers to find further sources of information and data.  These resources give readers a richer sense of the context of the ethics code and of specific dilemmas anthropologists have faced in their work. Continue reading “Anthropologists Approve Comprehensive Overhaul of Ethics Code”