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Biological anthropology must reassess museum collections for a more ethical future

With growing attention on the remains of people held by museums and universities around the world, we outline ethical considerations that researchers working with human remains in anthropology must bear in mind.

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Fig. 1: Health sciences students at Virginia Commonwealth University join in prayer for individuals discovered in an abandoned well on campus in 1994.


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Correspondence to Chris Stantis.

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The authors declare no financial conflicts of interests. The views of D.L. and S.B.S., as federal employees of the National Museum of Natural History, do not necessarily represent those of the Repatriation Program, Department of Anthropology, the National Museum of Natural History or the Smithsonian Institution.

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Stantis, C., de la Cova, C., Lippert, D. et al. Biological anthropology must reassess museum collections for a more ethical future. Nat Ecol Evol 7, 786–789 (2023).

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