A Global Health Exchange lecture
, co-sponsored by DGHI and Science Studies as Area Studies, Mellon Foundation Partnership For a Global Age Grant from Duke Asian/Pacific Studies Institute. This event is free and open to the public so please spread the word to your colleagues and students.
Light lunch will be served. Can't attend? Join via livecast
Metrics of the Global Sovereign: Numbers and stories in
Vicanne Adams, PhD
Professor and Vice Chair
Department of Anthropology,
History and Social Medicine
University of California San Francisco
Thursday, February 27
12 - 1 pm
Trent Hall, 310 Trent Drive,
About the lecture:
The recent shift from International Health Development to Global Health Sciences in the history of post-colonial health aid is not a simple substitution of new bottles for old wine. Complex transformations in the practices of audit, funding, and intervention are seen in this effort to improve health outcomes on a global scale.
The growing reliance on specific kinds of quantitative metrics that make use of evidence-based measures, experimental research platforms, and cost-effectiveness rubrics for even the most intractable problems is one transformation. Collectively these trends pose a problem of knowledge in relation to how we understand efficacy but also how we come to terms with the new "global sovereign" - a flexible assemblage of data production, number crunching and profit-sourcing that asks all exercises of intervention to work within its terms and limits.
Ethnography pushes us to see the remainder, or residuals, of these trends, appearing as stories of single lives saved, struggles won and relationships emergent. Stories might be read as both antidote and engine in the markets of global health today.
About the speaker:
Vincanne Adams, PhD, is professor and vice-chair in the Department of Anthropology, History and Social Medicine at the University of California, San Francisco. She is author of Tigers of the Snow and other Virtual Sherpas (Princeton), Doctors for Democracy (Cambridge), Sex and Development (Duke), Medicine Between Science and Religion (Duke), and Markets of Sorrow, Labors of Faith (Duke).