At the beginning of the 21st century, globalization transforms the world through technical innovations in communication, transport and finance, leading to unprecedented mobility and an increasing connectivity and interdependence.
Health risks and vulnerabilities to these changes are higher in areas of rapid population growth and changing life styles, ecological degradation, slow economic growth and poor governance, resulting in complex and interlinked demographic, epidemiological and social transitions.
Yet African societies have always been exposed to social change, health risks and economic and political insecurity and have developed remarkable social capacities facilitating transition and strengthening resilience in health. Diverse social networks and institutions play a pivotal role in storing and transferring knowledge and experience, learning to live with change and insecurity, creating diversity and flexibility along age and gender categories.
The Medical Anthropology Research Group (MARG) thus concentrates on health and well-being in urban African centres along the main thematic fields of:
Social resilience, vulnerability and equity
Generations, gender and mobility
The interfaculty research group links the Seminar of Social Anthropology, the Swiss Tropical and Public Health Institute and the Center for African Studies.