The role of moral frameworks in global health partnerships: a case-study on worms.
Sophie Hermanns (University of Cambridge)
Paper short abstract:
This paper proposes bringing insights and analytical tools from political science, IR and anthropology together to better understand how diverging moral frameworks of global health actors affect their partnerships with each other. A partnership for deworming in Africa serves as a case-study.
Paper long abstract:
Conflicting values are often cited as a concern when public organisations enter partnerships with private actors. Global public-private partnerships for health (global health partnerships) have become increasingly important and widespread. Researchers in political science and international relations have analysed the different forms partnerships for global health take, their governance models and means to evaluate their effectiveness. Anthropologists have produced rich work on the moral frameworks and ethical subject formation of global health actors. This paper proposes bringing insights and analytical tools from both fields together to better understand how diverging moral frameworks of global health actors affect their partnerships with each other. The paper asks (1) which challenges and conflicts arise when actors with different moral frameworks enter partnerships and (2) what strategies they adopt to communicate and collaborate across different moral settings. A global health partnership for deworming in an African country serves as a case-study. Drawing on secondary literature, stakeholder interviews and ethnographic fieldwork, I will show that (1) conflicts arose over priority setting within the programme, with one side arguing through utilitarian and corporate approaches, while another set of actors framed their priorities in the language of human rights and sustainability. I will argue that (2) translation from one moral vocabulary to another played a critical role in ultimately achieving agreement between partners. This paper suggests that by studying international actors' moral frameworks we can gain a better understanding of transnational public-private partnerships for development.
Partnerships and power in the 2030 Agenda