AO: Osseo-Asare relied heavily on oral history interview data because company archives were closed. She discusses how her own positionality was key in access and rapport building. Mentions how healers shared written recipes (but doesn’t discuss what she did with those).
AO: In her introduction, Foster includes notes on Methods and Terminology where she acknowledges the historic construction of Native peoples within academic scholarship as “knowable subjects.” To mitigate this, she notes that her book is based on an ethnographic study of both San peoples and Hoodia so as not to understand San struggles in isolation but in relation to scientists and growers. She notes: “I engaged in feminist methodologies of self-reflexivity about my methods and practices, methodologies that are intended to disrupt hierarchies between researcher and researched but that, as Andrea Smith cautions, can nonetheless reinforce structures of domination by positioning the researcher as self-reflexive white settler against those being researched as complaining ethnic subjects.” (17)
AO: Laura Foster (2017) is one of the few scholars within the annotated set that explicitly grappled for several pages with the double bind with which she found herself as a white female researcher from the US. She outlines conversations she had with Collin Louw who started out by asking: "Who are you? What do you want? You researchers, always coming around here, asking qeustions, talking to people and nothing happens." (19). She notes how she signed a Media and Research Contract that formalized expectations for researchers and required her to continually "commmunicate her research, stay in touch and share benefits with San peoples in the form of research materials, and a percentage of any royalties she might receive in the future." (20)
AO: Foster notes in her endnotes the sources of her statements, citing specific patent numbers, works, as well as interviews. Interestingly, she notes: (on file with author) to describe the interview data, seeming to suggest that one could inquire for the data if so desired? E.g. endnote 35 on page 167 - “Tommy Busakhwe, in discusssion with author in South Africa, March 3, 2009 (on file with author). She also prints the full text of speeches that she includes, see for example endnote 30 on page 159.
AO: Foster includes both community protocols and research guidelines for working with indigenous preoples and another that offers key strategies for indigenous peoples who may want to challenge a US patent in court.
AO: There is little information on specifically which archives Breckenridge used or his sources of data. He has a very thorough bibliography but does not distinguish between primary and secondary information.
AO: von Schnitzler narrates her own encounters with her interviewees within the text. She does not mention her data practices explicitly.
AO: The author notes a “research partner”; this person is quoted directly but not listed as co-author.
AO: Coban notes that she conducted participant observation to focus on bodily experiences of developing hardware. She also conducted qualitative interviews. Interestingly she notes that an important part of her participatory research and an aim to approach some principles of “the Charter of Decolonial Research ethics” was to organize roundtable discussions to discuss preliminary research results with the people she worked with. She noted that she decided to anonymize all research participants even if some did not mind being named in publication because of the sensitivity of some of the insights and topics.
AO: Coban includes several direct quotes throughout the piece.
AO: They do not discuss their own data practices.
AO: Okeke notes that she gets asked regularly about how molecular biology relates to health in Africa and argues that “unveiling the strong connections between science and modern medicine is a principal objective of this work.” She acknowledges that “the conscious decision to take some time away from my lab to write this manuscript is my response to the realization that it might be more important to communicate the magnitude and importance of laboratory deficits in general and diagnostic shortfalls in particular than to continue to chip away at these problems myself, or within small collaborative groups.”
AO: Tichenor writes a one paragraph summary of her data collection methods which included fieldwork between 2011 and 2014 (unclear if it was continuous). She does not describe any data storage or sharing mechanisms.
They do not discuss their data practices in depth but note that they spent 5 months in the field over the course of 2 years. In the first footnote they note the number of interviews in the two countries and the length of time of their research trips (2-3 weeks each). It sounds like they asked participants to keep a “data journal” but the raw journal entries are not discussed or linked to.
Mavhunga includes many figures that he created himself and also images from various archives (Black Bvekenyas Project (BBP), TKAV).
He notes in his references section: “The ethnographic material for this book is extracted from two projects I have conducted since 2008 that are dedicated to gathering (using digital cameras, camcorder, and computers) what ordinary people in the rural African countryside know and storing these resources within the communities for use in innovation. Brief histories of these projects are given below to orientate the reader on the nature of the archives, a fraction of which has been used in this book.” (257)
He also notes two respositories/archives he helps to run :
“Traditional Knowledge of African Villages (TKAV), Makuleke, South Africa: TKAV emerged in 2008 as an initiative to collect and record the indigenous knowl- edge of rural communities to address our day-to-day challenges. Thus far we have produced more than 1 terabyte of video and audio materials covering topics such as indigenous energy strategies, environment and ecology, medicinal plants, folklore, music, art, proverbs, as well as the history, culture, and economy of the Makuleke dating back to circa 1750. I oversee the project while Elmon Magezi Chauke, a member of the Makuleke community, conducts the day-to-day research activities.”
“The Black Bvekenyas Project (BBP), Chibwedziva, Zimbabwe: The Black Bvekenyas Project began in 2010. Its purpose is to document the life and afterlives of the famous ivory poacher Cecil Barnard, whom locals called Bvekenya, from the perspectives of his black children and grandchildren. Through it, his black grandchildren are trying to tell not only the stories of their lives, but also the his- tories of maTshangana. Thus the project has a 20 GB store of knowledge already collected since 2010. Solomon Bvekenya, a grandson of the famous “poacher,” is coordinating the interviews on a day-to-day basis, while I review material collected, identify gaps, and draft questions and potential leads for further interviews and site visits to ensure that the narratives are told as fully as possible.” (257)