TCLab "Narrate" 2013 Markets, Health technologies, justice: challenges of analysis and communication

The discussion elaborated on themes from Smita Srinivas's Market Menagerie: Health and Development in Late Industrial States—a far-reaching analysis of technological advance and market regulation of the biotech and pharmaceutical industries in India, Brazil, China, Nigeria, and South Africa—as a springboard into the difficult responsibilities of reporting across media and cultural divides. See the video of the full event here http://www.youtube.com/watch?feature=player_detailpage&v=nMQ5YXJxNsE

Jason Cone, Médecins Sans Frontières; Stephen Mayes, VII Photo; Brian McGrath, Parsons, The New School; Patricia Thomas, U Georgia; Smita Srinivas, TCLab Columbia University GSAPP

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Market Menagerie examines technological advance and market regulation in the health industries of nations such as India, Brazil, South Africa, Nigeria, and China. Pharmaceutical and life science industries can reinforce economic development and industry growth, but not necessarily positive health outcomes. Yet well-crafted industrial and health policies can strengthen each other and reconcile economic and social goals.

This article argues that the technological innovation is a contextual process whose relevance should be assessed depending on the socio-economic condition it is embedded in. Without this, technology-led economic policies (of Catch-Up varieties) are unlikely to meet the needs of most people, especially in countries where innovation and poverty reside side by side. We analyze micro-level account of the cognitive and socio-economic context within which innovations arise and argue that a process of real importance is being sidelined: the ability to innovate under 'scarcity' conditions.

Market Menagerie examines technological advance and market regulation in the health industries of nations such as India, Brazil, South Africa, Nigeria, and China. Pharmaceutical and life science industries can reinforce economic development and industry growth, but not necessarily positive health outcomes. Yet well-crafted industrial and health policies can strengthen each other and reconcile economic and social goals.