The conference welcomes researchers within the fields of medicine, social sciences and the humanities that seek to further discuss the potential of collaboration, common goals and possible challenges. We also welcome other stakeholders such as patients, health practitioners, and policy makers.
Main Topics of the Conference
This conference focuses, for example, on lived experiences of embodiment and illness, on ethical and in other ways normative aspects of medicine, and on local and global health challenges. It focuses on how sociocultural knowledge is translated into medical or health care practices, or the other way around, how discourses of society and culture are produced within medicine and health care. We also explore collaborations between researchers and clinicians, and seek to grasp new challenges and central collaborations for the future.
Health Challenges and Collaborations
Facing the rapid speed of new innovations and biotechnologies, medicine and health care are currently being transformed in numerous ways. The goal of personalized medicine, tailored to fit the individual patient’s need, and the strive towards equality in health meet restructuring welfare states, health consumerism, patients’ suffering from complex diseases. Medicine and health care also face increasing possibilities to screen and identify unrecognized disease in healthy, asymptomatic populations.
Globally, the World Health Organization has identified multiple health challenges including outbreaks of communicable diseases as well as humanitarian crises caused by environmental pollution and climate change. The call for collaborations between medicine, social science and the humanities has perhaps never been stronger.
The Research field of Medical humanities
The research field of medical humanities, understood broadly, encompasses the humanities and the interpretative social science in and of medicine, as well as inquiries at the very intersection of medicine, the humanities, and the social sciences. It sets out from the presumptions that sociocultural, ethical, and political aspects play into the development and use of specific medical technologies and medical knowledge production, and that such technologies and knowledge production also evoke sociocultural, ethical and political questions.
This research field also examines experiences of illness, suffering, and bodily and functional variations, and acknowledges that these experiences can evoke existential questions, which are central to the humanities and the interpretative social sciences. Further, the medical humanities aptly offer tools to engage with questions of meanings, subjectivity, agency, ethics, and power.