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Health

Through multidisciplinary research and policy engagement we bring new understanding and action on critical issues around health and health systems, and how they overlap with other systems such as food, as well as nutrition, sanitation, epidemics and zoonotic diseases.  Enhancing understanding of how to ensure healthy lives for all is a vital part of the UN 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development (Agenda 2030) and has been an integral focus of IDS’ work since its inception.

Our research and analysis on innovations in health services and systems – including work on identifying effective strategies to address the challenges of antimicrobial resistance – is accelerating progress towards achieving universal health coverage in Asia and Africa. Our work on nutrition spans the spectrum from dietary transition and globalisation of food systems, through to responding to the ways that marginalisation and inequity drive high child malnutrition rates.  We bring vital social knowledge to aid effective preparedness and response on pandemics. We show how direct impacts on the spread of diseases such as Ebola can be achieved by bringing learning from research on social issues and contexts to the right people in the right organisations at the right time.  Together with our global partners, we are generating and sharing new knowledge and evidence to identify the underlying causes of poor health and social inequalities, and the progressive policies and practices that can help bring about transformative change.

Programmes and centres

Projects

Project

Bangladesh Initiative to Enhance Nutrition Security and Governance (BIeNGS)

Despite significant improvements over the last two decades in poverty reduction and human development, the ultra-poor constitute 17.6% of the Bangladeshi population (HIES 2010) and the country continues to experience a high burden of undernutrition (stunting 36%, wasting 14%, underweight 33%) in...

Recent work

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Opinion

The need for a fresh approach to the HIV crisis

HIV/AIDS is not just a global health issue but feeds into gender equality, human rights, economic empowerment and education. Viewing the SDGs as a platform from which the barriers to ending AIDS can be overcome by linking them to these wider issues is critical. This was the topic of...

7 March 2019

Journal Article

Understanding the Nourishment of Bodies at the Centre of Food and Health Systems – Systemic, Bodily and New Materialist Perspectives on Nutritional Inequity

Social Science & Medicine;

That nutritional inequalities continue to proliferate at a global level requires new insight from all disciplines, given their formation at the intersection of broader inequities in food, health and other systems. This paper argues that critical social scientific perspectives are needed to...

4 March 2019

Past Event

Getting to Zero – A Doctor and a Diplomat on the Ebola Frontline

In 2014, a 28-year old British doctor found himself co-running the Ebola isolation unit in Sierra Leone’s main hospital after the doctor in charge had been killed by the virus. Completely overwhelmed and wrapped in stifling protective suits, he and his team took it in turns to provide care to...

1 March 2019

News

New project mobilizes social sciences against infectious threats

Sonar-Global, a new EU project involving IDS, will build an international Social Sciences network for the prevention and response to infectious threats and Antimicrobial Resistance (AMR). The project will provide a platform for collaboration among social sciences experts, institutions and...

26 February 2019

Report

The Ghana Mixed Methods Baseline Report

This short report summarises and integrates the key findings from the initial data collection round of each evaluation component carried out between October 2016 and January 2017. We use the mNutrition theory of change (ToC) to examine the assumptions about causal links between outcomes and...

15 February 2019

Report

The Tanzania Mixed Methods Baseline Report

In Tanzania, mNutrition is implemented through the ‘Healthy Pregnancy, Healthy Baby’ (HPHB) SMS (text messaging) programme, which is part of the Wazazi Nipendeni mHealth platform (WN). The programme is run by the mHealth Tanzania public-private partnership, which was initiated in 2012 by...

15 February 2019