Seminar 5: The Shared Strategies of Health-Harming Corporations to Influence the Policy Process
Featuring Dr. Joana Lima Madureira, Health Policy Advisor at the World Health Organization Country Office in Kyrgyzstan and Benoît Gomis, a Lecturer at the University of Toronto’s Munk School of Global Affairs & Public Policy and Research Fellow with the Pandemics & Borders Project at Simon Fraser University.
March 11, 2022
12:30 pm – 2:30 pm EST
Hosted via Zoom
Zoom link will be shared two hours prior to the meeting to everyone who registers*
About the Seminar: This seminar will focus on better understanding the cross-cutting strategies that health-harming industries employ to impact public health policies.
The illicit trade in legal drugs is often seen as a law enforcement issue. Focusing on the case studies of tobacco and cannabis, Benoît Gomis will demonstrate it is also a significant public health challenge, in which transnational corporations are playing a major part. The tobacco industry has often been directly involved or complicit in smuggling their own products, while playing a central but dubious role in shaping research, policy making, and law enforcement practices on the topic. Major Canadian cannabis companies are increasingly mimicking some Big Tobacco tactics, in the name of anti-illicit trade and at the expense of public health.
Joana Lima Madureira will discuss a framework to systematically study corporations and other commercial interests as a distal, structural, societal factor that causes disease and injury. Our framework offers a systematic approach to mapping corporate activity, allowing us to anticipate and prevent actions that may have a deleterious effect on population health.
Dr. Joana Lima Madureira is a Health Policy Advisor at the World Health Organization Country Office in Kyrgyzstan. Prior to working in Kyrgyzstan, she was a Technical Officer for Health Equity and Social Determinants of Health also with WHO. Joana trained as a Medical Doctor, after which she pursued a Master in Global Health. After working as a public health advocate at the Brussels based European Public Health Alliance she became increasingly interested in the commercial determinants of health, how they shape the consumption of unhealthy commodities and population health. She decided to pursue a PhD in this area and in 2019 defended her thesis “The commercial determinants of health, a theoretical framework and empirical applications” at the University of Oxford.
Benoît Gomis is a Lecturer at the University of Toronto’s Munk School of Global Affairs & Public Policy and a Research Fellow with the Pandemics & Borders Project at Simon Fraser University. Benoît’s research focuses on the illicit trade in drugs (in particular the role of the industry in shaping responses to it), terrorism, and borders. In an independent capacity, he works with a number of organizations including governments, think tanks, NGOs, companies, and universities. He previously worked with the University of Bath and SFU’s Global Tobacco Control Research Programme, where he focused on the tobacco industry and the illicit tobacco trade. Benoît is also an Associate Fellow at Chatham House, and a frequent contributor to Jane’s Intelligence Review and World Politics Review. He was educated at Sciences Po in Aix-en-Provence, Loyola University Chicago, and the London School of Economics and Political Science.