Where are you from? It’s a simple question most of us answer without hesitation. A global survey conducted among 7,200 people in 18 countries, including 400 Brits, now shows that 6 out of 10 Brits think the most you can trace their ancestry back to is two countries. But if you think you’re from just two countries, you’re likely mistaken.
DNA analysis: We are more diverse than most people think
According to Brad Argent, spokesperson at AncestryDNA - the world’s largest provider of personal DNA testing, our origin and inner geographical map is far more complex.
Argent states: "The findings from the survey confirms our experience with people who want to understand their DNA genealogy profile. Most people are very surprised when they find out their geographical background is more diverse than expected. We, on average, have genetic roots in four global regions, which far exceeds the general notion of two countries."
And momondo is pleased DNA insights can lend context to its global survey.
"With the survey we wanted to find out whether people knew of their ancestry. We hypothesized people may have underestimated their ancestral diversity. It all indicates we are more connected to the rest of the world than we realise – it is our aim to focus on this message," says Lasse Skole Hansen from momondo.
Hansen further elaborates: "We have therefore initiated a project with AncestryDNA to give people from all over the world the opportunity to take a DNA test and thus find out where they actually come from,” concludes Lasse Skole Hansen.
DNA Journey: Visit the countries you originate from
As part of the initiative, momondo in April 2016 invited 67 ordinary people from all over the world to take part in a project, which was documented on film. People were offered to take a DNA test to find out more about their ancestry. And they spoke of their hopes of what the tests would uncover. Some weeks later they were invited back, and their results were revealed.
"The project confirmed many of us do not know our full ancestry. It also showed knowing how diverse we in fact are can be an eye-opener and even change our view of who we are and who people from other nations are," says Lasse Skole Hansen from momondo.
Find out your own DNA
Now 500 people worldwide will get the opportunity to take a DNA test, reveal their own DNA genetic origins and thus find out where they come from. Among them, one winner will get the opportunity to take a DNA journey and visit the regions from which they originate.