The Hidalgo County Public Cemetery Project (HCPCP) includes stakeholders from different communities, requiring collaboration with various groups. The primary stakeholders in the HCPCP include the family members of those buried in the cemetery, as well as county officials who work with the cemetery and other community members. There are many diverse communities in the Rio Grande Valley, including ethnic communities, immigrant communities, and religious communities. Some of these communities also include the cemetery and individuals as members, as many individuals buried in the cemetery are Hispanic. We are also part of the communities we work with. In this project, we are all from the area, and each interact with different local communities, helping to inform a more diverse perspective on our research.
There are different sides to the involvement of cultural affiliation when conducting investigations. Cultural affiliation can be beneficial to understanding the cultural background and significance of the project. However, it can also influence the interpretations and perspectives of the project, and thus it is important to remain sensitive to the influence of culture, while remaining open to other views. When we work with certain communities, we may forget or neglect more diverse perspectives that could be achieved through working with different communities. Furthermore, certain individuals may also feel neglected. Finally, there are power dynamics involved amongst the communities with interest in the cemetery, such as the power of county officials compared to the family members and other community members involved.