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The Global in Global Health is Not a Given

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  • 1 Centre for Values, Ethics and the Law in Medicine, University of Sydney, Sydney, New South Wales, Australia.
  • 2 Department of Anthropology, Monash University, Australia.
  • 3 Woolcock Institute of Medical Research, University of Sydney, Australia.

The process of globalization is commonly espoused as a means for promoting global health. Efforts to “go global” can, however, easily go awry as a result of lack of attention to local social, economic, and political contexts and/or as a result of commercial and political imperatives that allow local populations to be exploited. Critical analysis of the processes of globalization is necessary to better understand the local particularities of global projects and confront challenges more transparently. We illustrate the potential adverse impacts of globalization in the global health setting, through examination of international tuberculosis control, global mental health, and the establishment of transnational biobank networks.

Author Notes

* Address correspondence to Paul H. Mason, Centre for Values, Ethics and the Law in Medicine, Medical Foundation Building, University of Sydney, 2006 New South Wales, Australia. E-mail: paul.mason@monash.edu

Financial support: This work was funded by a grant from the Australian NHMRC, APP1083980: Biobank Networks, Medical Research and the Challenge of Globalization.

Authors' addresses: Paul H. Mason, School of Social Sciences, Monash University, Victoria, Australia, E-mail: paul.mason@monash.edu. Ian Kerridge and Wendy Lipworth, Centre for Values, Ethics and the Law in Medicine, University of Sydney, New South Wales, Australia, E-mails: ian.kerridge@sydney.edu.au and wendy.lipworth@sydney.edu.au.

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