Over the past 1.5 years, the Center for Medical Humanities and Bioethics (CMHB) at Linköping University has been fostering collaboration and dialogue through a series of international workshops. These workshops, funded by Riksbankens Jubileumsfond, aimed to address critical issues in the field of medical humanities. Let's take a closer look at the key insights and outcomes from these gatherings.
Workshop 1: Decolonial and intersectionally-attentive medical humanities
29th March – 1st April 2022, in Durham
The initial workshop, which was a joint effort by CMHB and Durham University's Institute for Medical Humanities, sought to start discussions across centers and advance the development of medical humanities with a focus on decolonial and intersectional perspectives.
By bringing together researchers from both institutions, the workshop aimed to identify core questions for further research in interdisciplinary collaboration within medical humanities.
– The joint workshop provided a stimulating space for creative and inspiring discussions, initiating a journey towards a more inclusive and diverse approach to medical humanities, says Angela Woods, Professor of Medical Humanities at Durham University.
Workshop 2: Medical humanities and Covid/post-Covid challenges
19-21 September 2022, in Norrköping
In response to the ongoing global pandemic, CMHB organised a workshop to explore the challenges posed by Covid-19 and Post-Covid Syndrome from a medical humanities perspective.
The workshop, held at the Museum of Work in Norrköping, brought together scholars from around the world to discuss health inequalities, utilising intersectional perspectives. The event facilitated discussions on the experiences and treatment of Covid/Post-Covid.
– There were many interesting presentations which we were very grateful for. However, a special part of the event was to be able to gather for round table discussions at Wadströmska villan. Academic discussions in a beautiful surrounding are unbeatable, said one of the conference organisers, Sofia Morberg Jämterud, CMHB.
Workshop 3: Medical humanities - what future interdisciplinarity?
6-8 September 2023, in Vadstena
The third and final workshop delved into the future of interdisciplinary health research within medical humanities. CMHB aimed to bring together researchers with a shared interest in health research, exploring the epistemological underpinnings of interdisciplinary health research and addressing challenges and new directions for the field.
– My biggest take-away from the workshop is that it not only enabled networking opportunities, but that it also engaged participants in discussions about the conditions for researching medical humanities in various academic and geographical contexts. Speaking as a junior academic, such opportunities have a significant positive impact on the progression of one’s studies and research project, says Petter Almqvist-Ingersoll, PhD student at Linköping University.
A platform for continued exploration
In conclusion, the workshops organized by CMHB have facilitated interdisciplinary discussions and collaborations within the realm of medical humanities. The events addressed various current thematic areas, including perspectives attentive to decolonial and intersectional dimensions, the challenges posed by the Covid-19 pandemic, and the future of interdisciplinary health research.
– These workshops have been instrumental in fostering a space for critical dialogue and exploration of diverse perspectives, concludes Kristin Zeiler, director at CMHB and Lisa Guntram, coordinator at CMHB.
By bringing together scholars from different backgrounds and institutions, these workshops have contributed to the exchange of ideas and the exploration of epistemological underpinnings in the field. The outcomes of these gatherings are part of the broader trajectory of ongoing research initiatives in medical humanities, providing a platform for continued exploration, collaboration, and advancement in the field.