A multi-disciplinary approach for a building common understanding of genetic engineering for malaria control in Burkina Faso

L. Pare Toe, N. Barry, A. D. Ky, S. Kekele, W. I. Meda, K. Bayala, et al.,  Humanities and Social Sciences Communications,  9. 2022.

Genetic engineering is a complex topic, even for scientists working in other areas, and even more so for those who lack a formal scientific training. To help gene specialists and affected communities talk with one another, international guidance documents have been published that promote dialogue and exchanges. The current paper explores collaboration among scientists of different disciplines as well as between scientists, the local communities, mediated by theatre actors to develop a conversation about Target Malaria’s work on genetic technologies to modify mosquitoes for malaria elimination in Burkina Faso. It focuses on the co-construction of meaning of key scientific concepts with a view to fostering productive collaboration between scientists and the local community. The community provided feedback on what was shared with them regarding the science being developed in the lab and in the field, which in turn informed aspects of the research itself, and the nature of the collaboration between the scientists and the local community.

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