Global Health Governance

Global Health Governance: International Law and Public Health in a Divided World

Obijiofor Aginam
Copyright Date: 2005
Pages: 240
https://www.jstor.org/stable/10.3138/9781442675377
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  • Book Info
    Global Health Governance
    Book Description:

    Globalization has immersed all of humanity in a single germ pool. There are no health sanctuaries in a globalizing world. InGlobal Health Governance, Obijiofor Aginam explores the relevance of international law in contemporary public health diplomacy. He focuses on the concept of mutual vulnerability to explore the globalization of disease, in what is paradoxically a global village and a divided world.

    Drawing from a wide range of disciplines,Global Health Governanceoffers a holistic approach to global health governance involving a multiplicity of actors: nation-states, international organizations, civil society organizations, and private actors. Aginam articulates modest proposals under the rubric ofcommunitarian globalism, a paradigm that strives to meet the ideals of 'law of humanity.' These proposals project a humane global health order where all of humanity is inexorably tied into a global compact and where the health of one nation-state rises and falls with the health of others.

    International law—with its bold claims to universal protection of human rights and human dignity—is an indispensable governance tool for the reconstruction of damaged public health trust in the relations of nations and peoples.

    eISBN: 978-1-4426-7537-7
    Subjects: Law

Table of Contents

  1. Front Matter
    (pp. i-vi)
  2. Table of Contents
    (pp. vii-x)
  3. Foreword
    (pp. xi-xii)
    Judge C.G. Weeramantry

    That the world is a ‘global village’¹ or a ‘global neighbourhood’² is a truism that metaphorically underscores the increasing interdependence of populations, markets, and nation states. From the mid-seventeenth century, multilateralism has grappled with the multiple dimensions of the economic, health, social, and environmental vicissitudes of global interdependence. A plethora of globalizing forces has emerged in the form of complex international airline networks, flows of foreign direct investment, ecological tourism, religious pilgrimages, international sports festivals, regionalism, and free trading blocs.³ But, almost simultaneously, the emergent global village is threatened by a surge in the number of refugees fleeing civil wars...

  4. Acknowledgments
    (pp. xiii-2)
  5. Introduction
    (pp. 3-11)

    My mother gave birth to me in the late 1960s, during the Nigerian civil war. My parents lived in a small rural village in the Eastern Region of Nigeria — then the breakaway Republic of Biafra - that came under heavy shelling by Nigerian federal troops. Biafra was completely cut off by an economic blockade, and in the villages it was widely believed that the Nigerian federal authorities were pursuing a war of genocide. Bombs hit both military and non-military targets, fell on innocent civilians, and completely destroyed social infrastructure. Massive hunger and starvation set in, resulting in uncontrollable malnutrition, deplorable...

  6. Chapter 1 Conceptual Framework and Methodology
    (pp. 12-26)

    That the world is a ‘global village’¹ or a ‘global neighbourhood’² is a truism that metaphorically underscores the increasing interdependence of populations, markets, and nation states. From the mid-seventeenth century, multilateralism has grappled with the multiple dimensions of the economic, health, social, and environmental vicissitudes of global interdependence. A plethora of globalizing forces has emerged in the form of complex international airline networks, flows of foreign direct investment, ecological tourism, religious pilgrimages, international sports festivals, regionalism, and free trading blocs.³ But, almost simultaneously, the emergent global village is threatened by a surge in the number of refugees fleeing civil wars...

  7. Chapter 2 The Paradox of a Global Village in a Divided World
    (pp. 27-45)

    If health, as the Constitution of the World Health Organization provides, is ‘a state of complete physical, mental and social well-being and not merely the absence of disease or infirmity,’¹ then the age-old health divide between the developed and developing worlds deserves pre-eminent attention from scholars and multilateral institutions. Paradoxically, global health challenges in the past decades have focused not only on the South-North divide, but also on the phenomenon of globalization as a process that integrates nation states, ideas, identities, markets, cultures, and peoples across the world. Never before in history has humanity been so bonded together, and at...

  8. Chapter 3 Mutual Vulnerability and Globalization of Public Health in the Global Neighbourhood
    (pp. 46-59)

    Mutual vulnerability is the accumulation of the vicious threats posed to humans by disease and pathogenic microbes in an interdependent world, the susceptibility of humans to these threats, and the obsolescence of the traditional distinction between national and international health threats. Diseases once thought to be limited to certain regions of the world have emerged in other regions, while diseases thought to be under control have re-emerged in the same regions with renewed vigour.¹ Within the global neighbourhood, populations in both the South and North are now mutually vulnerable to the traditional and re-emerging powers of the microbial world. The...

  9. Chapter 4 Vulnerability of Multilateralism and Globalization of Public Health in the Global Neighbourhood
    (pp. 60-89)

    Multilateralism is vulnerable to what nation states perceive as being consistent with strategic interests. The broad range of issues encompassed within, and the wide terrain covered by, what constitutes strategic interests according to the subjective judgment of each nation state inevitably politicizes multilateralism. ‘Politicization’, in turn, produces visible gaps and adverse impacts that destabilize multilateral initiatives. Crisis in multilateralism is not a new phenomenon. Siddiqi observes that strains arise for a number of reasons, including disagreements over political issues, philosophical approaches, and more mundane issues such as proper ways to administer, staff, finance, and prioritize programs and policies within multilateral...

  10. Chapter 5 Case Study: Global Malaria Policy and Ethno-Pharmacological/Traditional Medical Therapies for Malaria in Africa
    (pp. 90-108)

    This chapter explores multilateral malaria control policy and its relationship with ‘ethno-medicine,’¹ ‘traditional medicine,’² or ‘ethnopharmacology’³ in Africa. The relevance of ethno-medical or ethnopharmacological approaches to a tropical disease like malaria remains controversial despite volumes of seminal works, a series of international conferences, and the elaborate multilateral eradication/control strategies the disease has generated in the past decades. One source of this controversy is science. Western scientific discourse often dismisses African traditional medicine including ethno-medical malaria therapies, as unscientific. Staugard argues that throughout history, an ambitious search for physical, social, and mental well-being has preoccupied the minds of humankind in all...

  11. Chapter 6 In Search of Prophylaxis: Communitarian Globalism and Multilateral Disease Non-Proliferation Facility
    (pp. 109-130)

    In the preceding chapter, I adopted Franck’s two structural preconditions of fairness discourse:moderate scarcityandcommunity.Moderate scarcity postulates that while global resources are never in short supply, only a fair, equitable, and distributive multilateral governance facility stands to protect and promote the health of populations in the emergent global village. Community underpins a conglomeration of perplexingly diverse political entities, players, and actors in the global arena: asine qua nonfor the evolution of a fair regime for the distribution of global resources aimed at public health promotion and protection. Thus, moderate scarcity and a community of political...

  12. Notes
    (pp. 131-182)
  13. Bibliography
    (pp. 183-198)
  14. Index
    (pp. 199-202)