Global Health Centre
12 October 2020

Global Health Research Seminars

The GHC seminar series presents research conducted by members of the Global Health Centre and their collaborators, and invites colleagues from across Geneva to participate in roundtable conversations. By bringing together this group of scholars, the Centre aims to build community and advance research in global health.

Watch all our research seminars below

Human Love and Human Suffering

This research seminar explored the geographic and ideological landscape of the mid-twentieth century transnational family planning movement through analysis of a ten-year run (1952-1962) of the International Planned Parenthood Federation (IPPF)’s Around the World newsletter.  It illustrated how the paper constructed a global community of advocates by spinning an emotive narrative of inspirational heroines driven by “human love and human suffering,” situating family planners as modern-day missionaries/humanitarians.  The family planning movement’s popularity reflected its ability to provide an arena for the expression of a variety of international and local concerns, including population growth and eugenics but also family health, women’s wellbeing, unsafe abortion, sex, married life, freedom, justice, child rights, women’s rights, and infertility.

13 October 2020 I Research Seminar with Nicole Bourbonnais

The Uncounted: Politics of Data in Global Health

In the global race to reach the end of AIDS, why is the world slipping off track? The answer has to do with stigma, money, and data. Global funding for the AIDS response is declining. Tough choices must be made: some people will win and some will lose. Global aid agencies and governments use health data to make these choices. While aid agencies prioritise a shrinking list of countries, many governments deny that sex workers, men who have sex with men, drug users, and transgender people exist. Since no data is gathered about their needs, life-saving services are not funded, and the lack of data reinforces the denial. The new book of Meg Davis, The Uncounted, cracks open this and other data paradoxes. It shows what is counted, what is not, and why empowering communities to gather their own data could be key to ending AIDS.


11 June 2020 I Research Seminar with Meg Davis

Social Accountability And Contraceptive Care In Uganda

Public health evidence increasingly suggests that social accountability contributes to improving health care services, with much promise for addressing barriers in contraceptive care. Yet little is known about how social accountability works in the often-complex context of sexual and reproductive health because this subject can be potentially sensitive and difficult to discuss in the open and public formats that characterise social accountability and collective action. Victoria Boydell examines the implementation of two social accountability projects in the context of contraceptive services in four districts of Uganda. These two case studies reveal the critical role that information, dialogue and negotiation play in social accountability for improving contraceptive information and services.


7 May 2020 I Research Seminar with Victoria Boydell