PhD candidate (Prof. Hansjörg Dilger)
Research: "Networking with Viruses – A multispecies ethnography of zoonotic viral pathogen circulation in The Gambia and in international transdisciplinary health research"
Working title: Networking with Viruses – A multispecies ethnography of zoonotic viral pathogen circulation in The Gambia and in international transdisciplinary health research
In my PhD project, I aim to expand the anthropological knowledge of zoonotic infection dynamics at the local level which is needed for a more comprehensive understanding of zoonotic outbreak risks. Over the next three years I work in the international transdisciplinary project “A social-ecological network approach to understanding zoonotic outbreak risk (SENZOR)” in Nigeria and The Gambia at the Centre for International Health Protection (ZIG) at the Robert Koch Institute (RKI) in Germany. The project is set on our limited understanding of pathogen circulation in humans, other animals and different environmental settings. To address this knowledge gap, I will pursue three main objectives: 1) I aim to gain granular insights into the dynamics of multispecies communities (humans, other animals and microbes/viruses) across different living arrangements and landscape gradients in The Gambia. 2) Based on this, I set out to develop social network models for different landscape gradients and the respective actors (e.g., animal species, microbes, water, materials) in changing weather and climate. 3) I intend to draw out the multiplicity and frictions of knowledge (and) technologies that (re-)make and (re-)shape our understanding and framing of diseases and microbes (viruses). This is to ultimately create a bridge between the different parties in an international transdisciplinary project (e.g. life sciences with lab work and social sciences) and the local realities in the field, national and global agendas, as well as discourses in the academic spheres. The ethnography will situate these objectives in discourses of urgency and equity in our multiple crises of global change.
Funded by VW-Foundation.
Initiative: Global Issues / Call: Preventing Pandemics: the Role of Human-Environmental Interactions