This lab invites anthropologists who have strayed from the halls of academia into applied fields of work, yet continue to circle the discipline as they reflect on questions at the heart of anthropology.
This lab acknowledges the diversity of anthropological practice in Australia (and beyond) and the contribution that anthropological insights and methodological approaches can make in areas of work and knowledge production beyond academia. We bring together a group of anthropologists who while having 'strayed' from the halls of academia into diverse and applied fields of work continue to 'circle' the discipline, as they reflect on experiences and questions that are central to doing anthropology and/or being an anthropologist. Who are the anthropologists who identify as practitioners of applied anthropology, and across what fields of work are they spread? What kinds of issues do they face as employees or consultants; what kinds of futures do they imagine, and what (as yet) unimagined 'applied worlds' might be identified? How do applied anthropologists think through questions of positionality, especially given the variety of roles they perform - researcher, writer, facilitator, translator, advocate - and the often changing nature of relationships: are those we work with, write or give testimony about our interlocutors, informants, subjects, colleagues, friends…? Who do applied anthropologists produce knowledge for, what diverse audiences and therefore forms of communication do we need to consider, and what are the risks of the miscommunication of anthropological reasoning? We invite all practitioners of applied anthropology to participate in this conversation. Out of this lab we hope to build a community of applied anthropologists in Australia, to be supported/facilitated by the online platforms of the Australian Anthropological Society and The Familiar Strange (TFS) blog/podcast crew.