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Petition to Oppose the Genographic Project

Indigenous peoples worldwide are extremely concerned by the April 13, 2005 announcement of a five-year, $40 million collaboration between National Geographic Society, IBM Corporation, and the Waitt Family Foundation, known as “The Genographic Project.” The project plans to collect 100,000 samples of Indigenous DNA from around the world. Indigenous peoples have consistently voiced their opposition to this type of research because it breaches cultural values, bioethical standards and human rights law.
Standing in solidarity, we, the undersigned, hereby call upon National Geographic Society, IBM Corporation, and the Waitt Family Foundation to abandon The Genographic Project and all of its aims. We will alert our communities to refuse any participation in this project. Furthermore, we will continue to call for a boycott of all programs, products and services of the National Geographic Society, IBM Corporation, and Gateway Computers (the source of the Waitt Family’s fortune) until The Genographic Project ceases to exist.


On May 20, 2006, all 868 on-line signatures submitted to-date are hereby transmitted to Spencer Wells of the Genographic Project. (Download the signatures in PDF)


Debra Harry, Executive Director, Indigenous Peoples Council on Biocolonialism


May 20, 2006