Patrons help to represent the work of the Organization for Intra-Cultural Development in many areas.

In a variety of liaison, grant-making, consultancy and research work, the profile of OICD patrons can help to
pave the way to more effective collaboration and assistance.

The OICD executive committee established the patron system in 2007 and the anthropologist Prof. Thomas Eriksen joined us as our first official patron in November of that year.

Patrons spend a term of approximately two years with the OICD and are then offered “lifetime research affiliate” status. In early 2010, after two years and five months of patronage, Prof. Eriksen became a lifetime research affiliate and the nominations opened for the next OICD patron.

Nominations are received from the OICD general membership and following a three month period the executive committee had a list of eight candidates. The nominations included a wide variety of high profile individuals: politicians, economists, novelists, playwrights, lawyers, anthropologists and philosophers.

All members of the OICD vote on their first choice of candidate during patron elections, and the Comaroffs were clear favorites amongst the voting members.

In the 3rd quarter of 2010, the Comaroffs accepted our invitation to join the organization as patrons for a two-year term.

It is not hard to see why OICD members nominated and voted for the Comaroffs: their respective and joint contributions to anthropology and its application across intellectual and real-world contexts are well known
beyond the field.

One recent joint publication of direct interest to the OICD’s work on understanding cultural identity is “Ethnicity, Inc.” an account of the ways in which ethnic populations are remaking themselves in order to open up new markets and regimes of consumption.

Jean and John can be heard discussing the book on the BBC radio program Thinking Aloud alongside diplomatic
advisor Simon Anholt.

It is an honor for the Organization for Intra-Cultural Development to welcome such champions of anthropology to their roles as patrons.

A warm welcome to the Comaroffs!