Author Archives: Ingvild Hope

Network for social science in Norwegian global health

Invitation to join! 

The intersection between social science and medical approaches is at the core of global health research. There are many researchers within the social sciences and humanities based in Norway who share an interest in global health, but we are spread across many disciplines and institutions. You are therefore invited to join a new network for social sciences within Norwegian global health research, administered by the Global Health Politics and Culture research group at the Centre for Development and the Environment (UiO), on behalf of the Norwegian Forum for Global Health Research.

The network will be an arena for information about new research projects and publications, seminars, conferences and funding calls, as well as discussion of methodological, ethical or other research-related issues. This will initially be a virtual network, operating primarily through an email list, but we can also plan network meetings at Globvac conferences or other relevant venues.

This network is open to anyone working in Norway who has an interest in how social scientific, historical and political perspectives can advance understandings of global health – not just social scientists.

I hope you would like to join! Please register your interest to join by filling this online form, stating your name, position/affiliation, discipline and thematic research interests.

Feel free to share this invite with your colleagues!

Contact person:
Katerini Storeng, Associate Professor
Centre for Development and Environment, UiO

The annual Bergen Summer Research School (BSRS)

The annual Bergen Summer Research School (BSRS) is an interdisciplinary venue for exploring some of the greatest challenges of our time. Around one hundred PhD candidates, researchers and policy makers from around the world will gather in Bergen from 12-22 June, 2017.

Application deadline is March 1, 2017.

The courses will be tied together by common sessions on research tools, writing and presentation skills, joint keynotes by high-profile researchers, plenary discussions, and an excursion into the Norwegian waterscape.

Read more about the courses

BSRS seeks to create a unique environment for the participants to present, engage, discuss, progress their thinking, and improve on their work.

This is the tenth summer Bergen organizes this cross-disciplinary PhD-level summer research school on global challenges.

Bergen Summer Research School is a joint effort by the Western Norway University of Applied Sciences, Chr. Michelsen Institute, NHH Norwegian School of Economics, Uni Research, and the University of Bergen.

Norwegian Forums 10th Anniversary Seminar

At the Norwegian Forum for Global Health Research Forum’s 10 Anniversary Seminar 12-13 January 2017 the conclusion was that it takes time to build relations and networks – and that after 10 years, Forum’s Global Health Research activities are becoming firmly established.

Highlights of Forum activity:

  • conferences involving Forum researchers are now held annually (every second year with GLOBVAC)
  • a national Researcher School in Global Health has been established
  • the Forum suggestion of formally establishing an infrastructure for its activity has resulted in the establishment of a Norwegian Institute of Global Health (NIGH).

Forum has prepared a 10-year report of its activities: Please see here.

The Researcher School in Global Health will facilitate between PhD candidates in Global Health across Norway by making it easier for them to visit one another and cooperate on projects. All PhD candidates enrolled in Global Health at a Norwegian institution of higher education are welcome to become members. Membership will enable them to be eligible for travel grants to attend courses in global health subjects taught at institutions across Norway. The School’s first annual PhD conference will be held in conjunction with the GLOBVAC conference next spring, 14-15 March, 2017 in Oslo.

Links relating to NIGH

Research Seminar on Migration and Health

The theme for the 10th Anniversary’s Research Seminar was Migration and Health. Many of the speakers highlighted that not only is migrant health becoming increasingly relevant for Norway and other European countries, migrant health is part of global health.

The talks reflected various complementary perspectives:

  • The scope of Migration health in Norway, by Bernadette Kumar, NAKMI and Centre for Global Health UiO
  • Migration and health, historical perspective by Harald Siem, Norwegian Institute of Public Health and NAKMI
  • Rights to access National Health Services for refugees and asylum seekers- Government guidelines, by Gro Saltnes Lopez, Department for Minority Health and Rehabilitation, Health Directorate
  • Migrants health perspective from general practice in Norway, by Esperanza Diaz, Department of Global Public Health and Primary Care, UiB
  • Irregular migrant’s ‘precarious inclusion’ in European health care regimes, by Christine M. Jacobsen, The Centre for Women’s and Gender Research (SKOK), UiB

 

At the Anniversary Dinner, Bente Moen, Forum Chair, gave out a number of prizes:

  • Recognising service to Forum and Global Health: Rune Nilsen, Gunnar Kvale
  • Winners of Essay Contest about a Global Health Issue:

“Seks helsetiltak for flyktningene” by Esperanza Diaz is awarded 10 000 NOK for best essay across categories. The essay fulfils the criteria in the announcement and is placed in the category for «Refugees – migration”. It conveys the message of shortcomings and need for improvement in the Norwegian health system and points to important issues that actually could be easily solved by reducing bureaucracy and simplify administrative routines. The essay is nicely structured and easily accessible.

«Ta de nye hjelpeorganisasjonen på alvor» by Haavik & Kitching, is awarded 5000 NOK in the category «Refugees – migration”. The motivation was that the essay is based on facts through research and shows how small organizations and common people with small resources can make a big difference. The essay is nicely written and to the point, using plane language bringing the message to the lay reader in an accessible form.

“Snåsamenn – hjemme og ute”, by SH Braathen and M Eriksen is awarded 5000 NOK. It fills the criteria for “Innovation in global health”, because it addresses the under-covered and stigmatized topic of mental health. The article discusses the potentially beneficial role of traditional healers in the field of mental health, whether in Norway or in Africa, and the shortcomings of Western psychiatry if applied uncritically and “out of context”. Traditional healers’ success in promoting mental well-being is related to a human search for respect, dignity and belonging, and the authors suggest that their role should be considered in the development of community-based mental health services in Africa.

By Elinor Bartle

Engaging the next generation

rikkeMedical student, Rikke Jensen Moth, attended the Norwegian Forum for Global Health Research Meeting in Tromsø, 3-4 Nov. 2016 on behalf of the Norwegian Medical Student Union (NMF). She explained that Global Health is a new focus area for NMF, with global health student representatives in each of the 5 NMF local branches. Moth expects to see more activity in this area as it reflects increasing student interest in global issues.

Read about their focus in Global Health (in Norwegian). They have established a mailing list forum for sharing experiences (learn more, in Norwegian)

During the day-long seminar 4 Nov, organised by the Centre for Arctic and Global Health (SAG), one of the speakers (Torstein Risør) spoke of how the current Norwegian medical curriculum makes it possible for students to engage in local, national and international questions of medical and social significance (see the circled areas in the graphical overview of the medical curriculum).

student-exchange

Moth herself will be travelling to Tanzania in January where she will be investigating post-operative infection issues in an orthopaedic hospital.

Norwegian Forum for Global Health Research welcomes the participation and engagement of the next generation of Norwegian doctors!

www.medisinstudent.no

http://legeforeningen.no/nmf

Working together in global health across Norway

The Norwegian Forum for Global Health Research began almost exactly 10 years ago, 16 November 2006. A group from Forum and other global health-interested met in Tromsø 3-4 November, 2016.

The meeting was hosted by Forum and the Centre for Arctic and Global Health (SAG), Norway’s newest global health centre, located at the University of Tromsø. Day 1 (3 Nov.) involved a Forum meeting to discuss highlights from the annual activity plan for 2016 as well as plans for 2017. Day 2 (4 Nov.) was a day-long seminar organized by SAG. A number of the presentations are available on the SAG website.

New global health centre in Tromsø

Forum is committed to improving knowledge exchange and collaboration in global health between Norwegian institutions and researchers. Holding a meeting at the new UiT centre is a part of this strategy. The day-long seminar was entitled, “Global Health in the North”. The range of speakers with short presentations provided an impressive and inspiring glimpse into Global and Arctic health activities at UiT. Forum congratulates the seminar organisers, Inger Scheel, Mona Kiil and Turid Austin Wæhler.

Many of the speakers highlighted principles that are part of Forum’s strategy and purpose:

  • Education is critical to capacity building and sustainable improvements
  • Being culturally aware increases the potential for mutual learning and success
  • Multi, cross-, and inter-disciplinarity approaches are needed
  • Norway, as a small, rich nation, may have a moral obligation to act to improve health and health care in marginalized population groups in low- and middle-income countries (LMIC), but it actually reaps many knowledge- and experience-sharing benefits from such LMIC collaborations

Participants learned more about projects with Russia, Georgia, Tanzania, indigenous peoples, migrants, Haiti, … Speakers shared tips for succeeding with cross-cultural and inter-disciplinary challenges. Future directions include some student-based initiatives.

The impressive range of presentations supports the description SAG has of itself on its website. It says that SAG is a network platform that provides support for networking activities and cross-border collaboration in global health, to health researchers, practitioners and educators based in Northern Norway.

2016 at Forum

Forum has had a busy and successful year. Highlights include:

  • hosting a well-attended conference in Bergen this spring entitled, “Norwegian Global Health Networks with Impact, Bergen 20-21 April 2016”.
  • establishing Norwegian Research School of Global Health (NRSGH) has been established at the Norwegian University of Science and Technology (NTNU). All PhD students across Norway are welcome to participate by becoming members. Membership will enable them to be eligible for travel grants to attend courses in global health subjects taught at institutions across Norway. NRSGH’s first annual PhD conference will be held in conjunction with the GLOBVAC conference next spring, 14-15 March, 2017 in Oslo.
  • Providing input to initiation of a more grounded structure for Norwegian global health activities: the Norwegian Institute of Global Health (NIGH)

Other highlights

SAG is not the only new global health centre to be opened in Norway this year, a Centre for Global Health was also established at the University of Oslo (UiO). The Centre Co-ordinator, Ingeborg Haavardsson, was present in Tromsø.

It was decided that Forum will have a 10-year Jubilee celebration and seminar January 2017. Details will be posted as soon as they are available.