AO. Incentives not to acknowledge all the co-producers of knowledge.

AO: Osseo-Asare notes the challenges with finding this information given the incentive not to notate the many different stakeholders involved in creating and producing the knowledge.

  • “These are stories that did not wish to be told. I have had to excavate these cases in contexts where the publicly available evidence was thin. Pharmaceutical companies like Eli Lilly and Bristol- Myers Squibb do not allow public access to their archives and fiercely protect what they consider their intellectual property. Neither healers nor scientists in African countries have preserved detailed written records of their investigations, and each maintains cultures of secrecy when pressed for information. I have used traces of evidence gleaned from faded pages in archives, dried plants in markets and museums, and pieces of conversations to document how various parties sought information on valuable plants. Partial data from the past alongside recent observations raise important questions about how we understand the process of plant drug discovery and rights to pharmaceuticals and profits.” (7)
  • Due to the legal incentive to establish “priority” groups of plant experts have constructed narratives of priority, omitting details on the many protagonists participating in knowledge production (10)


Analytic (Question)




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