Unit | Society, Gender and Health

Social, cultural and gender-related issues are central to effective disease control and achieving public health aims. The unit conducts research on gender and health, medical anthropology and cultural epidemiology, among others. These topics represent key aspects of the health social sciences and acknowledge the importance of gender as a critical determinant of health.

Gender and Health

Current gender and health research focuses on how gender shapes health status and accesa to health care. We conceputalise gender as a socio-cultural health determinant and examine, for example, cultural drivers and barriers affecting access to services for patients with HIV/AIDS. Furthermore, we address sex/gender-related factors in epidemiological models of non-communicable diseases.

Medical Anthropology

The medical anthropology research emphasises an actor approach to studying health and illness. We have developed vulnerability and resilience models, including a multi-layered framework to guide research, and we build capacity to increase social health protection and access to services in adverse urban and rural African settings.

Sonja Merten

Sonja Merten, MD, PD, PhD, MPH

Berger González M, Pelikan K, Zinsstag J, Ali S.M, Schelling E. Transdisciplinary research and One Health. In: Zinsstag J,Schelling E,Waltner-Toews D,Whittaker M,Tanner M, eds. One Health: the theory and practice of integrated health approaches, 57-70. Wallingford: CABI, 2021 [2020]

Chitnis N, Zinsstag J, Fuhrimann S, Hattendorf J. Animal-human transmission models. In: Zinsstag J,Schelling E,Waltner-Toews D,Whittaker M,Tanner M, eds. One Health: the theory and practice of integrated health approaches, 145-156. Wallingford: CABI, 2021 [2020]

Fries T, Tschanz Cooke K, Berger González M. The spiritual dimensions of health. In: Zinsstag J,Schelling E,Waltner-Toews D,Whittaker M,Tanner M, eds. One Health: the theory and practice of integrated health approaches, 356-367. Wallingford: CABI, 2021 [2020]

Gordon I.J, Alonso.S, Crump L, Dominguez-Salas P, De Garine-Wichatitsky M. Food security and nutrition. In: Zinsstag J,Schelling E,Waltner-Toews D,Whittaker M,Tanner M, eds. One Health: the theory and practice of integrated health approaches, 327-343. Wallingford: CABI, 2021 [2020]

Häsler B, Cuevas S, Canali M, Aragrande M, Shaw A, Zinsstag J. One Health economics. In: Zinsstag J,Schelling E,Waltner-Toews D,Whittaker M,Tanner M, eds. One Health: the theory and practice of integrated health approaches, 118-134. Wallingford: CABI, 2021 [2020]