2017 ISA Pre-Conference Symposium: The Sociology of Global Health, Care and Social Policy


Conference Documents
Schedule at a Glance
Call for Submissions
Sponsorship Information
Participant Guidelines
General Information

A Symposium on Global Health and Care, cosponsored by RC19, the Centre for Global Social Policy, and the Department of Sociology, U of T

July 13-14, 2018  University of Toronto

Thinking globally about health, care work and related social policy requires a shift in sociological thinking. This symposium asks what sociology has to offer to the study of global health and care, including what it has already contributed, what it might yet contribute, and what might be gained from a more systematic or programmatic consideration of “the global.”

The symposium will take place on the evening of July 13th and the full day of July 14th, which is the day before the commencement of International Sociological Association meetings in Toronto. The tentative schedule for the symposium can be found here. Panelists will address the following themes:

(a) the history of sociological contributions to global health, care, and social policy; and the impact that consideration of the global could have on these areas of sociology;

(b) emergent research on organizations and policies related to health, and care;

(c) social movements & health in global context;

(d) material processes (e.g. trends in science and technology, movement/logistics of biomaterials or pharmaceuticals) that are currently structuring trends pertinent to global health and care;

(e)  the social structuring of cultural processes influencing health or care transnationally (e.g. medicalization, health perceptions, behaviour, etc.), or the study of those processes including methodology);

(f) additional factors related to mobility and immobility, both population and other forms of mobility.

There will also be sessions on forthcoming books.

In working towards a specification of the global to guide this symposium, we began with a list of criteria that we think are individually insufficient, but might be adequate in combination:

  1. comparative (across nations, regions, cultures);
  2. inclusive of understudied people and places ;
  3. describe global trends;
  4. attentive to global institutions and to local movements with global aspirations;
  5. feature theoretical approaches that specify macro-micro links within the context of macro-level political-economic theory (e.g. World systems).

Sponsored by:

Social Sciences & Humanities Research Council of Canada
Scott Schieman, Canada Research Chair in the Social Context of Health, Chair of Department of Sociology (St. George)
Ito Peng, Canada Research Chair in Global Social Policy, Director of Centre for Global Social Policy