PSAS: Thinking Anthropologically about Astrobiology

The exploration of outer space, and specifically, the astrobiological search for evidence of life, is an endeavor and a science that is made powerful because of its multidisciplinarity. From the NASA HQ archives to the Atacama Desert to (working from home) at NASA Ames to countless conferences, I have had the phenomenal opportunity to see science in action and the creative and critical ways in which scientists engage with the fundamental questions posed by astrobiology. For this talk, I will share stories and data from my ongoing dissertation research in anthropology, outlining the methodological strategies I employ and demonstrating the insights I draw from ethnographic encounters. Based on this, I will share a few lessons learned from over a year of fieldwork and some preliminary conclusions.