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Globalization of medicine and public health: economic and social perspectives (1850-2000)

Posted on 4 March 2015

An international conference featuring a truly splendid lineup in Lausanne, Switzerland

The objective of this conference is to contribute to a better understanding of the driving forces behind the globalization of medicine and public health since the mid-19th century. In the last twenty years historiography has consistently progressed on the cultural and social dimensions and consequences of Western medicine in colonial Africa, Asia and in Latin America (imperial medicine). The aim of this conference is to consolidate existing critical analyses of the emergence of global medicine and explore new research avenues. To do so we will gather scholars of economic and business history, global history, history of medicine, history of public and international health and study a wide variety of countries and regions. The conference is organised by Sanjoy Bhattacharya (University of York), Thomas David (University of Lausanne, EPFL), Pierre-Yves Donzé (Kyoto University) & Davide Rodogno (Graduate Institute of International and Development Studies).

For more (website will be live soon)

Event flyer: Lausanne Conference Flyer (PDF , 403kb)

Event agenda: Lausanne Conference Agenda (PDF , 346kb)


12 March

09.00-10.45: Broader Perspectives On Global Public Health

Private Philanthropy and Global Health (A Priori)ties : WHOse big deal? - Anne-Emanuelle Birn (Dalla Lana School of Public Health, University of Toronto, Canada)

Some Reflections On Smallpox Eradication Programme - Erez Manela (Harvard University, U.S.A.)

Pharmaceuticals In A Global Periphery - Nitsan Chorev (Brown University, U.S.A)


11.00-12.45: Global Public Health After The Second World War: Non-Western Visions

The Convoluted Negotiations of International Health in Portuguese India: Portugal and the South East Asia Regional Office - Monica Saavedra (Centre for Global Health Histories, University of York, U.K.)

Between Tropical Medicine and International Health: the African Regional Office of the World Health Organization, c. 1950s - Marcos Cueto (Casa De Oswaldo Cruz, Fiocruz, Brazil)

The WHO in Metropolitan Fantasies: Historical Events or Historiographical Tyranny? - Sanjoy Bhattacharya (Centre for Global Health Histories, University of York, UK)


14.00-15.45: Interests: Scientific, Professional And Business

The Making of Generic Drugs - Jeremy Greene (The Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine, U.S.A)

Global Business History of The Vaccine Industry - Julia Sallé Yongue (Hosei University, Faculty of Economics, Japan)

The Global Botanical Roots of the Soviet Pharmaceutical Industry: The Case of Quinine - Johanna Conterio (University of London, U.K)


16.00-18.00: Actors And Networks

Fellowships in Public Health During the 20th Century - Thomas David ( University of Lausanne and Ecole Polytechnique fédérale de Lausanne, Switzerland) & Davide Rodogno (Graduate Institute of International and Development Studies, Switzerland)

Running Rockefeller Men Out of Algeria in 1925 - Clifford Rosenberg (City College of New York, Graduate Centre, U.S.A)

Globalising Social Medicine in the Cold War Era: The Rockefeller Foundation's Health Care Experiments in South Africa - Paul Weindling (Oxford Brookes University, U.K)


13 March

09.00-10.40: Diffusion and Models

The World Health Organisation and the Genesis of The Malaria Eradication Program - Thomas Zimmer (University of Freiburg, Germany)

The Business of Hospital Construction in Emerging Countries - Pierre-Yves Donzé (University of Kyoto, Japan)

Making Health Comparable: WHO’s Engagement in Setting Standards for Health Statistics - Yi-Tang Lin (University of Lausanne, Switzerland)


11.00-12.40: The World As A Laboratory

“Just what the doctor ordered”: Marketing the Contraceptive Pill in Europe and the US (1960s-1970s) - Agata Ignaciuk (University of Granada, Spain)

The Globalization of Vaccine Trials: Networks and Rivalries in Live Poliovirus Vaccine Development - Dora Vargha (University of London, U.K)

The International, Regional and Colonial Politics of Nutrition in Fiji 1945-1965 - Sarah Hartley (Centre for Global Health Histories, University of York, U.K)


14.15-16.00: Round Table: Practitioners Feedbacks On A Scholarly Workshop







Wellcome Images medicines

Credit: Wellcome Library, London