Healthy Societies 2023: Epistemic Justice for Healthy Societies – School of Social and Political Sciences Healthy Societies 2023: Epistemic Justice for Healthy Societies – School of Social and Political Sciences

Healthy Societies 2023: Epistemic Justice for Healthy Societies

Healthy Societies 2023:

Epistemic Justice for Healthy Societies

Online only event: Please register to join


Healthy Societies Lecture Series

The Sydney Centre for Healthy Societies (SCHS) is pleased to launch its new series of occasional lectures, with the aim of highlighting critical issues at the intersection of health and social life on our changing planet. The lecture series will provide a platform to present the work of the Centre’s members, collaborators and visiting scholars, offering an opportunity to forge new connections and foster further collaborations across institutional, national and disciplinary boundaries.

To launch the series, we have invited two illustrious speakers to address the pressing and pertinent issue of Epistemic Justice in Health. Associate Professor Seye Abimbola (University of Sydney, Australia) will join Professor Nelson de Barros (University of Campinas, Brazil) to deliver their perspectives on the topic, with an introduction by SCHS Deputy Director, Dr Katherine Kenny and a discussion led by SCHS Deputy Director, Associate Professor Nadine Ehlers.

Epistemic Justice in Health

The field of global health depends on a consolidated evidence base as much as it does on different health interventions dispersed across the world. However, the knowledge that constitutes this evidence base is inseparable from the conditions of its production including histories of colonialism and unequal power relations: forms of domination and control that are often implicitly or explicitly reproduced in the absence of critical scrutiny. As a result, much of the assistance and the forms of ‘care’ that are deployed by the Global North in the Global South continue to reproduce the health inequities they seek to ameliorate.

Knowledge, then, is central to the politics of global health. How we know what we know, where that knowledge is produced and deployed, and by whom: these questions are central to both the efficacy of global health interventions, and also to health equity and, ultimately, social justice. Epistemic Justice, then, emerges as a necessary pillar of the pursuit of more equitable ‘healthy’ societies on a global scale. In our inaugural Healthy Societies Lecture, we hear from two experts who will address what an epistemically just approach to knowledge production might look like in the global health arena, how might it restructure health interventions in ways that better promote health equity, and what stands in the way of realising such an approach in the pursuit of better global health futures.

Event (1 – 3pm, online)

  • Introduction by SCHS Deputy Director, Dr Katherine Kenny
  • Lecture: Epistemic Injustice in Global Health (Associate Professor Seye Abimbola, University of Sydney, Australia)
  • Lecture: Indigenous Health Knowledges and Justice in the Amazon (Professor Nelson de Barros, University of Campinas, Brazil)
  • Discussion and Q&A by SCHS Deputy Director, Associate Professor Nadine Ehlers


Associate Professor Seye Abimbola, School of Public Health, University of Sydney, is a health systems researcher from Nigeria. He is currently based at the University of Sydney in Australia, where his teaching and research focus on knowledge practices in global health, health system governance, and the adoption and scale-up of health system innovations. Dr Abimbola was awarded the 2020-2022 Prince Claus Chair in Equity and Development at Utrecht University in the Netherlands for his work on justice in global health research. He is the editor-in-chief of BMJ Global Health.

Professor Nelson de Barros is a Professor of Health Sociology and Coordinator of the Laboratory of Alternative, Complementary and Integrative Practices in Health (LAPACIS), Department of Collective Health, Faculty of Medical Sciences, State University of Campinas (DSC/FCM/Unicamp). He is Secretary/Treasurer of Research Committee 15 Sociology of Health/ International Sociological Association (2018-2023) and a member of DIPEx Brazil. He specialises in the sociology of health and qualitative research methods.

Please note, this event was previously advertised as a hybrid event. This event will now only be taking place online

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