Open journal

ISSN 2473-4772

Ticking All the Boxes

Anthony P. Glascock*

Anthony P. Glascock, PhD, Interim Head and Professor, Department of Anthropology, Drexel University, Philadelphia, PA, USA, E-mail:

It was 1972 and I was talking to a group of fellow anthropology graduate students just prior to leaving the country to conduct my dissertation research when I pronounced that applied should never go in front of anthropology. In my view, anthropology was an intellectual discipline and that if someone wanted to “help” people they should become social workers. Ratchet forward several decades and once again I’m speaking to anthropology students only now I’m telling them that if their research does not aid people in how they live, there is no reason to conduct it. So, what happened?

What happened is that I became interested in aging and old age just before I took my first job, and I decided to focus on issues surrounding the definition and treatment of the elderly in non-industrial societies. This research was still fairly abstract and certainly far removed from “helping” people. However, it was a fairly short journey from analyzing secondary data to actually conducting research on the treatment of the elderly. This research led to an interest in the relationship between health and aging, which in turn led to a focus on home health care and, lo and behold, a decade later, I was being issued a series of patents – yes, an anthropologist with technology patents – for a behavioral monitoring system to be used in the residences of at-risk elderly. One start-up company and a sale of the patents to General Electric later, I was launched on a career as a consultant, helping health care providers deliver care through the use of a variety of technologies. As a result of this journey, I encourage students who are either pursuing graduate studies or entering the job market to focus on issues surrounding health and care delivery.

Thus, I welcome the launch of Anthropology-Open Journal, since, as the British are fond of saying, it ticks all the boxes: it focuses on the intersection of anthropology and biology and health; it is online; and it is open access. Let me venture to say that what we have with ANTPOJ is a vision of where the discipline is headed. First, by almost every measure, there is no more relevant subject matter today than health and care provision. Not only does it absorb an increasingly large share of society’s resources, but maintaining health is one of those cultural universals that link all societies and peoples. Second, the Journal being online and open access just makes sense in the world we live in. The paramount goal of all researchers is to have their findings read by the largest possible audience so that their findings impact the work of others. How better to reach this goal than to have their work made readily available by a journal such as ANTPOJ.

Thus, it is my sincere hope that anthropologists and individuals from related fields take full advantage of what ANTPOJ has to offer. The Journal will only succeed if researchers are willing to both submit contributions and encourage their colleagues to do the same. There are many deserving outlets for our work, but I have high hopes that ANTPOJ will become one of those journals to which people turn to read the latest and best research reporting. I personally plan to spread the news of ANTPOJ far and wide and I encourage everyone reading this to do the same. Once again, my kudos to those responsible for taking the important step of making Anthropology-Open Journal a reality.


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