Department of Social and Cultural Anthropology
Office: B9-243
Liaison: Director of the Chair of Social Knowledge Transfer – UAB Research Park - Santander

Phone: +34 93 581 10 99
Email: adriana.kaplan@uab.cat
Web: www.mgf.uab.es


Research Group

Research lines

  • Senegambian migration
  • Sexual and reproductive health
  • Female Genital Mutilation

Projects and Agreements

  • Obra Social “la Caixa”, Diputación de Álava, FAS (Fundació Autònoma Solidària), University of The Gambia, Ministry of Health (Republic of The Gambia), Cuban Medical Mission in The Gambia.



Adriana Kaplan is anthropologist, Professor of Health Anthropology at the Department of Social and Cultural Anthropology of the UAB , and Principal Investigator of the Interdisciplinary Group for the Prevention and Study of Harmful Traditional Practices (IGPS/HTP).

She is also the Director of Wassu-UAB Foundation, which hosts the Transnational Observatory of Applied Research to New Strategies for the Prevention of Female Genital Mutilation/Cutting (FGM/C), with two research centres, in Spain and in The Gambia.

Adriana Kaplan started her research career by focusing on the study of the migratory movements from Sub-Saharan Africa and the anthropological analysis of the processes of acculturation and social integration from a circular, transnational and gender perspective. Since 1989 that she has been conducting fieldwork in The Gambia, Senegal and Guinea-Bissau, concentrating on health related issues, particularly reproductive and sexual health and FGM/C.

In The Gambia, she has collaborated with the Medical Research Council as a researcher, also having been advisor of the Women’s Bureau and consultant for different international agencies (UNFPA, UNDP, UNICEF and EU) on FGM/C issues. In Spain and at European level, she has been a consultant for different institutions such as CRID/Pla d’IgualtatSecretaria per a la Immigració, Institut Catalá de les Dones, Diputación de Barcelona, Generalitat de Catalunya, Parlament de Catalunya, Emakunde, Diputación Foral de Alava, European Parliament, European Institute for Gender Equality, among others. She is a member of the WHO Expert Committee on FGM/C. Moreover, she was a founding member and coordinator of SOS Racisme Catalunya (1998), and of the NGO Wassu Gambia Kafo (1999).

Adriana Kaplan is responsible for several articles and books, including De Senegambia a Cataluña: procesos de aculturación e integración social (1998) (“From Senegambia to Catalonia: processes of acculturation and social integration”), granted with the X Award Rogeli Duocastella in Social Sciences (Fundació "la Caixa").

In the audio-visual field, she has directed the following documentaries: Gambia, life cycle and survival(1991); Initiation without Mutilation(2004), which provides an alternative and innovative methodological approach to prevent FGM/C, and has been officially adopted by the Government of The Gambia; and A future without mutilation, a cascade of knowledge transfer(2013), which presents the methodology for FGM/C prevention promoted by Wassu-UAB Foundation.

In 2008, she received the International Navarre Prize for Solidarity, awarded by the Government of Navarre and “Caja Laboral”.

Adriana Kaplan was able to organize the first International Forum on Harmful Traditional Practices ever conducted in The Gambia ("Exploring strategies and good practices. From local to global", 5th-7th May 2009); developed a curriculum where FGM/C is a cross-curricular topic, which has been adopted by all Schools of Medicine, Nursing and Midwifery the country; and initiated the implementation of the National Training Programme for Health Professionals on FGM/C, through the signature of a Memorandum of Understanding with the Ministry of Health and Social Welfare of The Gambia.

Since January 2009, she has been awarded the first Chair of SocialKnowledge Transfer in Spain (Parc de Recerca UAB - Santander), as a recognition for her scientific career. In 2010, she was chosen by the Catalan Association of Scientific Communication (2010) as one of the 16 Scientific Catalans of Excellency. In 2011, she has become a scientific member of the Islamic Women's Shura Council in New York. In 2013, her extensive ethnographic work in Africa was recognized within the "99 world classical anthropological works" by the Centre for Research and Higher Studies in Social Anthropology of Mexico (2013).

Publications (selected)

  • KAPLAN, Adriana (1998) De Senegambia a Cataluña: procesos de aculturación e integración social. X Premio de Investigación en Ciencias Sociales Dr Rogeli Duocastella, Fundación La Caixa, Barcelona. 207 pp.
  • KAPLAN, Adriana (2005) “From Senegambia to Spain: Migration process and social integration” en Monograph Migration: European Journal of International Migration and Ethnic Relations. Nº 43/44/45 pp.52-65, EMZ, Berlin.
  • KAPLAN, A.; TORAN, P.; MORENO, J. (2008) “Nuevas estrategias para el abordaje de las mutilaciones genitales femeninas: la iniciación sin mutilación. Un abordaje circular Gambia-España” en Género y Desarrollo desde las Universidades: Visibilidad de las acciones y difusión de análisis de buenas prácticas. Universidad Autónoma de Madrid/Ministerio de Asuntos Exteriores, Madrid.
  • KAPLAN, A.; TORÁN, P.; BERMÚDEZ, K.; BOLIBAR, B. y MORENO, J. (2008) “Conocer y actuar: un proyecto interdisciplinar de prevención de las mutilaciones genitales femeninas en Gambia y España”, en Studia Africana, Centre d'Estudis Africans-Barcelona. #19. pp. 42-52.
  • KAPLAN, A.; CANO, F.; MORENO, J. y PÉREZ JARAUTA, M.J. (2008) “From local to global: Female Genital Mutilation in Diaspora”, in Journal of FGM and other harmful traditional practices nº 1, IAC, Geneva/Addis Abeba.
  • KAPLAN, A; TORÁN, P; MORENO, J; CASTANY M.J.; MUÑOZ, L (2009) “Perception of primary health professionals about Female Genital Mutilation: from healthcare to intercultural competence” en BMC Health Services Research 2009, 9:11.
  • KAPLAN, A.; TORAN, P; MORENO, J.; CASTANY, M.J. y MUÑOZ, L. (2009)  “Perception of primary health professionals about Female Genital Mutilation: from healthcare to intercultural competence”. In BMC Health Services Research, Nº9: BioMed Central. pp. 11.
  • KAPLAN, A.; TORAN, P. y MORENO, J. (2009) “Nuevas estrategias para el abordaje de las mutilaciones genitales femeninas: la iniciación sin mutilación. Un abordaje circular Gambia-España”. En MOLINA, E.; SAN MIGUEL, N. (coords.) Universidad, Género y desarrollo. Buenas prácticas en derechos Humanos de las Mujeres. Universidad Autónoma de Madrid/Ministerio de Asuntos Exteriores, Madrid pp. 333-351. 
  • KAPLAN, A. y BEDOYA, M. (2010) “Las mutilaciones genitales femeninas: asilo, identidad y derechos humanos”. En Comisión de Ayuda al Refugiado en Euskadi (CEAR-Euskadi).Persecución por motivos de género y derechode asilo: del contexto global al compromiso local. El sistema de asilo español frentea la violación de los derechos humanosde las mujeres y de lesbianas,gays, bisexuales y transexuales Lankopi, S.A., Billbao. pp. 63-75.
  • KAPLAN, A.; FERNÁNDEZ, N.; MORENO, J.; CASTANY, M. J.; RUIZ, M.; MUÑOZ, L., MONGUÍ, E. y TORÁN, P. (2010) “Female Genital Mutilation: perceptions of healthcare professionals and the perspective of the migrant families”. In BMC Public Health Nº10: BioMed Central pp. 193.
  • KAPLAN, A. y LÓPEZ, A. (2010) "Mapa de la mutilación genital femenina en España 2009". Antropología Aplicada 1. Servei de Publicacions Universitat Autònoma de Barcelona, Bellaterra.
  • KAPLAN, A.; HECHAVARRÍA, S. y PUPPO, N. (2010) "Manual on female genital mutilation/cutting for health professionals". Interdisciplinary Group for the Prevention and Study of Harmful Traditional Practices (IGPS/HTP) UAB, Bellaterra.
  • KAPLAN, A.; MORENO, J. PÉREZ JARAUTA, M. J. (coords.) (2010) "Mutilación genital femenina. Manual para profesionales" Grupo Interdisciplinar para la Prevención y el Estudio de las Prácticas Tradicionales Perjudiciales (GIPE/PTP) UAB, Bellaterra.
  • KAPLAN, A.; HECHAVARRIA, S.; MARTIN, M.; BONHOURE, I. et al (2011) “Health consequences of female genital mutilation/cutting in the Gambia, evidence into action”, en Reproductive Health Journal, 8:26
  • KAPLAN, A; FORBES, M; BONHOURE, I; UTZET; M; MARTÍN M; MAMEH, M; CEESAY, H. (2013) “Female Genital Mutilation/Cutting (FGM/C) in The Gambia: long-term health consequences and complications during delivery and for the newborn” en International Journal of Women’s Health, 2013:5, pp 323-331.
  • KAPLAN, A; HECHAVARRÍA, S; BERNAL, M; BONHOURE, I. (2013) "Knowledge, attitudes and practices regarding FGM/C among rural Gambian health care professionals: a transcultural study", en BMC Public Health, No13: BioMed Central pp. 851.
  • KAPLAN, A.; CHAM, B.; NJIE, L.; SEIXAS, A.; BLANCO, S.; UTZET, M. (2013). "Female Genital Mutilation/Cutting: The Secret World of Women as Seen by Men", en Obstetrics and Gynecology International, vol. 2013, Article ID 643780.
  • KAPLAN, A. y LÓPEZ, A. (2013). Mapa de la Mutilación Genital Femenina en España 2012 Antropología Aplicada 2. Servei de Publicacions Universitat Autònoma de Barcelona, Bellaterra, en prensa.
Research Groups Research Groups of the Anthropology Department


Institut Català d'Antropologia Catalan Institute of Anthropology


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Departament of Social and Cultural Anthropology
Building B - Facultat de Lletres
08193 Bellaterra (Cerdanyola del Vallès)
TEL +34 93 581 12 39






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