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As the international effort to map the human genome matures, scientific interest in using that map to evaluate the genetic differences among human groups is growing. It recently has become popular (and politically important) to argue that this new interest in what might be called “population genomics” puts at risk significant interests of the groups under study and that those groups therefore should be involved in the decision to conduct any study that would use individual genotyping to generate information about the group as a whole. These proposals have vast practical and ethical implications. What would it mean for a group’s collective permission to be “informed” and “voluntary”? If group consent is required, are other protections, such as the right to withdraw from research or confidentiality, also important for groups? How should the “researcher-group” relationship be managed administratively? Moreover, if the logic behind the argument for group rights in population-genomic research is accepted, it is likely to be applied to other biomedical spheres as well. Perhaps groups, and not just individuals, should have a say in whether they are included in genetic epidemiological surveys and preventive genetic-screening programs or whether customized treatments are developed to respond to their members’ particular susceptibilities. Before agreeing to impose new obligations on researchers, however, we need to give the propositions underlying the claims of group rights more scrutiny. Does population genomics put important interests of human groups at risk, and could some form of “group consent” succeed in protecting those interests?