TRACK 3: Caring for a Connected Humanity: eHealth, and the Transformation of Healthcare in the Global South
Vincent Duclos, Department of Anthropology, University of Montreal, Canada (
Norman Schräpel, Institute of Philosophy and Anthropology, University of Halle, Germany (
Call for Papers
Health care in the developing world is being transformed by a proliferation of screens, interfaces and networks that constitute emerging infrastructures linking up bodies, knowledge, and care practices in new spatial and temporal configurations. Under the impulsion of governmental agencies a number of international institutions, NGOs, and private sector players aimed at managing and improving health care through tele-technological means have extensively unfolded on a global scale. Touchscreen tablets allowing to monitor the cardiac frequency of distant patients, text-message reminders of follow-up medical appointments, tele-consultations between practitioners: What is commonly referred to as ‘global eHealth’ comprises a host of heterogeneous practices sharing a commitment to help strengthen or transform health care provision in order to get out of the “vicious cycle of poverty, hunger, and disease” (World Bank 2011). Stemming out of the rise of ICT4D (Information and Communication Technologies for Development) and its effort to bridge the ‘digital divide’, global eHealth brings forth a whole series of questions that this track seeks to engage with. This track aims at offering a social science perspective that critically comments on issues like ICT4D, human capital, global health, data production, project and technology design, etc. A critical perspective on recent attempts to implement eHealth solutions in the global South will not only discuss the expectations these technologies produce, challenges, patterns of failure or of the successful translations, but will also bring about valuable information for tangible future perspectives in the field. This track particularly appeals to papers anchored in field research, providing viewpoints that might fruitfully contrast with generic narratives of progress and development, implicit to most of global eHealth literature. Submitted papers could be dealing with such exemplar questions:
How is eHealth transforming the daily routines of patient care in the developing world?
How is eHealth transforming health care systems, from data stocking practices to modes of care delivery?
In what ways is eHealth bolstering the human capital of healthcare personnel around the world?
In what ways are tele-technologies producing spaces of connectivity, and knowledge, generating new forms of presence and proximity?
For paper format and submission guidelines please see the main conference website.