Mercedes Doretti was born and raised in Buenos Aires, Argentina. She earned an advanced degree in Anthropological Sciences in 1987 from the National University of Buenos Aires. She helped found the Argentine Forensic Anthropology Team, a non-governmental, not-for-profit, scientific organization that applies forensic sciences - mainly forensic anthropology and archaeology - to the investigation of human rights violations in Argentina and worldwide, which was established in 1984 to investigate the cases of at least 9,000 disappeared people in Argentina under the military government that ruled from 1976-1983. Mercedes has worked at the Philippines, Chile, Venezuela, Guatemala, El Salvador, Iraq, Brazil, Croatia, Ethiopia, Haiti, Panama, French Polynesia, South Africa, Ethiopia, the Democratic Republic of the Congo, Bosnia, Herzegovina, East Timor, Zimbabwe, Ivory Coast, Indonesia, and Mexico. Human Rights Watch, Amnesty International, and the United Nations regularly use her investigations in reporting on human rights.