Globalisation and Global Health Governance: Power, Politics, and the Transnational Determinants of Health
The module aims to provide students with an understanding of the boundary-spanning determinants of health, exploring how institutional, political, economic and commercial factors influence individual and population health around the world. It provides theoretical and historical insights into the evolution of health and non-health actors after 1945 and health governance at a global level. We consider how international institutions, trade, and markets impact upon health, and consider globalisation and its connections to health inequity in and between countries. Students also consider the commercial determinants of health, exploring how multinational corporations’ activities have impacted on health past and present. We explore critically the complexity, achievements and shortcomings of current global health governance structures, and develop new insights into how these can be shaped to positively impact health equity in the future.
Module Learning Outcomes:
By the end of the module, students should be able to:
- Describe global and regional governance structures, international agreements and understand the roles of key actors in development and health, both past and present
- Critically review the theoretical concepts and ideologies which inform an understanding of the social determinants of health at a transnational level, including the political, economic, legal and commercial determinants of health, and health and human rights
- Provide an analytical account of the concept of globalization and its relevance to health and health inequalities, security and emergency preparedness
- Appreciate the role of global health diplomacy in articulating local, regional or global policy options to address a public health issue
- Synthesise evidence from global health policy and practice to critically appraise international approaches to transnational issues like tobacco, drugs, arms, alcohol, and ultra-processed food and drink.
Principles of Public Health, Principles of Epidemiology
A mixture of taught sessions, local and global case study comparisons and participatory exercises.
Coursework: Structured Assessment “patch test” (100%)
This assignment is a 1500-word essay that will have three sections that are related. It is a piece of coursework, but we also may refer to it as a ‘patchwork text’ as there are three sections (patches) that are put together for the final submission.
For many global health professionals being able to critically analyse existing responses and to propose the development of new policy or structures is a key part of their task. This assignment will provide a means for students to systematically examine a global health issue of their choosing, to write an informed critique of an existing response or responses, and to put forward a new proposal to address the issues in question.
There are various ways that students could complete this assessment, however, the following guidelines will ensure that they meet the criteria for a passing grade and will also help them structure their work in a way that potential funders would find accessible.
Note that the first two sections lead the reader through a journey – students must make their arguments clear from the start. It is important to set out why the global health issue is worthy of attention, using data and evidence from peer-reviewed journals.
Patch1: Overview of global health issue
- Definition of the issue or challenge
- Set out key historical trends, statistics and policy at all relevant levels from sub-national to supra/multi-national levels
- Disease Distribution
- Human rights/legal considerations and implications
Patch 2: Review of existing responses that address the issue from patch 1
- Summary and types of responses/interventions
- Key themes of responses/interventions
- Limitations of responses/interventions
Patch 3: Proposal for new policy or intervention to address the issue (based on patches 1 and 2)
- Overview of your proposed response/change, including the role of diplomacy in addressing the issue
- Choice of approach and rationale
- Suggested evaluation strategy or measure of success
- Mechanism of effectiveness (why do you think it will work?)
- Potential barriers to success
Module Length: 5 days