Every month MdM recommends an anthology or monograph for readerly perusal. Inevitably, these suggestions spark discussion both on and off-screen, including a recent request for a showcase of the other global health blogs (and vlogs) that I return to again and again.
The below is a wild but wonderful selection of my most tried and tested reads as well as some more recent discoveries, to which I am always delighted to add. Please comment below if there are others we should know about.
Dr. Martin has achieved cult status amongst student global healthers for his brand of accessible, bitesize updates on careers, policy and research each week. While this is all published on his blog , his YouTube channel is really worth following. Offering a platform for entry-level professionals across NGOs and PPPs, his vlogs also feature charmingly dodgy web-cam use from his token resident global health elder, Terry Schmidt. Would recommend plugging in your sound and skipping the visuals or just heading straight to the podcast playlist.
Categorised by part of the world, this online journal showcases the writings of University of California (SD) students of international affairs. With a considered scientific angle, the editor’s blog explores contemporary issues making national news. Many of the blog titles err towards clickbait, but looking beyond the excessive use of the rhetorical question the content invariably represents a skilful distillation of complex issues such as climate change into academic yet accessible reads.
Admittedly, I spent a lot of my spare time at university as Press Officer and Blog Editor for this think tank, but the content is noteworthy for its breadth and tangible policy implications. Spanning topics and commissions as diverse as Action Against Hunger to leprosy missions with Lepra, the blogs track the progress of policy work for external organisations generally over 12-month periods, drawing on the most current comment and research in their respective focal sectors.
Less traditional blog, more broadcaster with accompanying transcripts, NPR’s ‘Goats and Soda’ publishes stories from a changing world with a prioritisation of health and development concerns. As a starting point, I would recommend reading their blog that details how the name ‘Goats and Soda’ came about. There is a lightness of touch in all of their work as well as great visuals and some outstanding interview pieces. Not always topical, but a constant source of inspiration.
Perhaps slightly biased given that I was fortunate enough to be commended for my suggestion of an untold global health story in their recent competition, for which the I wrote an article on the overlooked killer, Kala Azar (available here), but with due credit: Global Health NOW is an initiative from the John Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health. One of the most prolific of all these recommendations, GHN staff scour the daily news, reports and published research for the most interesting reads, compiling these into their e-newsletter which is disseminated along with social media coverage. A favourite for spotting new writing and noteworthy topics.
LinkedIn groups: Global Public Health
LinkedIn’s largest public health group, GPH is for those working professionally or studying areas of international public health importance, with a focus on health issues impacting low- and middle-income countries. One of the benefits of joining such a group is that discussion is often more lively and instantaneous than on blogging sites. Forums associated with these groups facilitate a blog conversation that extends beyond the confines of the written piece.
The Lancet Global Health journal is a comprehensive periodic read, but the tangential blog platform is worth dipping into. Guest and regular writers cover a host of topics from access to medicines, blood donations, urbanisation and collectively take a macro look at challenges within the field and consider possible answers to these.
Sadly this series finished last year, but thankfully the blogs have yet to be archived. Sarah Boseley is a magical writer, making the unfathomable feintly outlined and the tragic compelling rather than hopeless. Described as ‘The Guardian’s health editor on the politics, policies, philanthropy and progress being made in the fields of global health and aid‘, you can look back through titles that consider the policies and politics of Pharma, the hidden costs of healthcare in conflict zones and commentaries that consistently explore issues from every angle.
Comment below with your own must-reads.
Image Credit: A. Bow-Bertrand