Join us for the second session of the STS Helsinki Seminar Series on:
Monday, March 18th from 12.15-13.45
At: 3rd floor seminar room, Helsinki Collegium of Advanced Studies (HCAS), Fabianinkatu 24
Andrea Butcher, postdoctoral researcher, University of Helsinki
Tackling antimicrobial resistance in biosocially demanding settings: the challenge for low-income regions
Bioscientific research of antimicrobial resistance is increasingly focusing on the role of environments, specifically anthropogenically-created sites of environmental pollution, in AMR evolution and acceleration. Such emphasis invites examination of the socioeconomic and material agencies driving the creation of such sites. Drawing upon field research of urbanisation and food production dynamics in South Asia and West Africa, the paper will examine how AMR risks relate to the various demands placed upon human and non-human agents in an ecology of development practices that include economic growth, urban infrastructural development, food production techniques and healthcare facilities. It will consider how social science and STS approaches can be applied to AMR knowledge generation, in which antibiotic use is but one determinant.
Andrea Butcher is postdoctoral researcher in Sociology at Helsinki for the sociological component of AMRIWA (Antimicrobials in West Africa), a project producing knowledge of how AMR genes flow between people, animals and environments in West African regions. Andrea’s background is the anthropological study of the nexus of development, environment and religion in the Indian Himalaya. Since 2017, she has been engaged in the social study of microbes, initially examining socioeconomic drivers for potential antibiotic use in Bangladesh’s aquaculture sector. Her previous research at the University of Exeter examined antibiotic use and AMR flows in Bangladesh’s shrimp and prawn export aquaculture. She is a member of the Helsinki-based research group Cultures of Cultures: Antimicrobial Resistance in Global Contexts.