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Professor selected to receive unique Fulbright Scholarship

U of T professor Anne-Emanuelle Birn, Canada Research Chair in International Health, can add the title Fulbright scholar to her long list of accomplishments.

Professor Birn, who teaches in the Department of Social Sciences at U of T Scarborough and in the Department of Public Health Sciences at the St. George campus, was named a Fulbright Research Scholar in Multidisciplinary Studies to France. Only one such grant is awarded annually.

The widely published professor and author will be a visiting scholar at the Institut National d’Etudes Démographiques and the Centre de Recherche Médecine, Sciences, Santé et Societé (CNRS-INSERM) in Paris.

Grant proposals were evaluated based on their scholarly excellence and their potential for increasing mutual understanding between the United States, France, and the international community. Professor Birn’s project will analyze child mortality problems in France and Uruguay in order to uncover the French-Uruguayan connections in child health between 1890 and 1950, before, during and after Uruguay’s child health crisis.

The study explores how French influences in child health affected Uruguay and other Latin American countries, and how Uruguayan approaches, such as its 1934 Children’s Code of rights, contributed to debates and developments in France.  The study is one of the first to examine the influences of public health ideologies, institutions and approaches from Latin American settings on other countries and regions.

“This project offers me a chance to deepen understanding of the field of international (child) health from the existing paradigm of the diffusion of scientific and administrative ideas from metropolitan locales to the “periphery” into a more dynamic scenario in which health policies and practices circulated internationally, emanating from multiple locales and spreading in many directions,” Professor Birn said.

Birn has conducted almost two decades of research in Latin America, North America and Europe in the areas of international health policy, historical demography and the history of public health.  She is the author of Marriage of Convenience: Rockefeller International Health and Revolutionary Mexico (University of Rochester Press, 2006) and over 50 articles and book chapters, as well as lead author of Oxford University Press’s forthcoming Textbook of International Health.

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