Human Terrain Systems

TitleHuman Terrain Systems
Publication TypeCase Study
Year of Publication2010
Date Published08/2010
PublisherAssociation for Practical and Professional Ethics
Publication Languageeng
AbstractIn 2004, the Pentagon began a program called the Human Terrain Systems that seeks to develop a database for use by military officers in the field that maps cultural trends across a geographic region. The program opperates by embedding social scientists, usually anthropologists and linguists acting as contracts, with deployed military groups. Advocates of the Human Terrain system cite that those units with embedded HTS teams have seen reductions in fighting as much as 60%. However, the American Anthropology Association has warned that participation in HTS threatens to compromise standards of voluntary informed consent and may violate the professional responsibility of do no harm.
NotesAssociation of Practical and Professional Ethics Regional Cases 2010