Our History

The MedHealth Mini-Conference at the annual meeting of the Society for the Advancement of Socio-Economics brought together scholars working at the intersections of health, medicine, economy, and society. At our meetings in 2020, 2021, and 2022, we explored a wide range of topics, including norms of equity and inclusion in medicine, the valuation and regulation of new drugs, and the state’s role in responding to market failures in healthcare. MedHealth Mini-Conference participants come from various disciplines and fields, such as sociology, political economy, law, management, area studies, and public health. We are committed to including participants from a range of institutions, career stages, and geographic areas. In the spirit of innovation and creativity, we encourage papers that are works-in-progress and our panels are centered around discussant feedback and audience participation. Through this website, we aim to bring new scholars and practitioners to SASE, build an interdisciplinary community committed to advancing the study of the social, economic, and political dimensions of health and medicine, and recognize the scholarship of former mini-conference participants.

The Story

In 2019 then SASE Executive Director Martha Zuber invited Kathryn Ibata-Arens to give a book talk in Paris at SciencesPo Center for the Study of Organisations (CSO). Étienne Nouguez was Kathryn’s host at CSO and it became clear that the pair shared an interest in analyzing the socio-economic and political embeddedness of the global pharmaceutical industry. A few months later, Étienne was visiting Chicago on a research project. The two met at a café at the Art Institute of Chicago and together sketched out the idea for a SASE mini-conference on medicines and health that could bring together a wide range of scholars across disciplines to share work-in-progress, particularly that having both theoretical and empirical import. Initially planned for SASE 2020 in Amsterdam, our mini-conference has been a part of two virtual SASE conferences in 2020 and 2021. Wan-Zi Lu and Larry Au, graduate students at the time, took part in the virtual meetings after seeing the call for papers. Wan-Zi and Larry joined the organizing team for our in person meeting in Amsterdam during the SASE 2022 conference. We look forward to continue growing this community of researchers.

What is a Mini-Conference?

As per the SASE website, Mini-Conferences at SASE are thematic groupings of three to five panels that are linked to the overarching conference theme and are featured in a separate stream in the Annual Meeting program. Mini-Conferences are proposed to the Annual Meeting Program Committee for the Committee’s consideration. It should be noted that even though a Mini-Conference was organized in the past, this does not guarantee future organization, as Mini-Conferences are not meant to be permanent structures. Mini-Conferences change year-to-year, in order to capture emerging topics and concerns from the SASE membership. 

Get In Touch

To contact the organizers of the Mini-Conference, please email: medhealthsase2020 (at) gmail (dot) com.