Social and Cultural Anthropology involves the study of human relations and differences, with a particular focus on comparison: understanding peoples around the world by understanding how they are similar to, or different from, others. Every aspect of human life, thought and activity is studied by anthropologists, ranging from the most obscure and small scale to the most newsworthy and topical: if it involves people and their interactions with each other and the world, anthropologists study it.
Anthropology is particularly known for the meticulous, slow and in-depth research methodology it developed: ethnographic research. This involves long-term periods of participant observation and rigorous attention to detail. Ethnographic methodologies generate quite different kinds of social and cultural data and knowledge than more quantitative research methods.
Currently, anthropologists at Helsinki are studying a variety of topics in the following regions: Indonesia, Turkey, Morocco, Lebanon, Greece, Madagascar, Cuba, the UK, Ghana, South Africa, Egypt, the USA, Chile, Cameroon, Mongolia, the Russian Federation, Finland, India, China, Fiji, and Papua New Guinea.