When I started exploring the provocative topic of stigmas in culture and religion related to infertility and IVF in the UAE, many cautioned that I was treading in an unacceptable area. On the contrary, my research (cutting edge at the time), proved the need to understand the Emirati culture and its rich knowledge and respect of its own traditions, religious knowledge, and integration of science and technology to meet the needs of the modern society. In the true spirit of the Fulbright mission, this work enabled an understanding of the cross section of medicine and middle eastern cultures and religions no matter where infertility and IVF is being studied or pursued. My Fulbright experience has provided a platform to publish, present, and teach about this important research around the globe.
Shirin Karsan – Fulbright to UAE 2009-2010