Call for papers for a Special Issue on ‘Performing Health Systems’

The call for a Special Issue on ‘Performing Health Systems’ is now live.  Briefly summarised:

This special issue of Social Science and Medicine invites critical and creative dialogue between health systems researchers and anthropologists on the central motif that defines the field – the insistence on the existence of the system and the need to find and identify what is systemic.  We invite empirical and conceptual papers from social scientists and health systems researchers that critically examine constructs of ‘the system’ and the assumptions these embody, the range of methods commonly used to grasp the ‘systemic’ in health systems research, and the implications of systems thinking for understanding the roles, relationships, and responses of health systems actors.

We encourage contributions that illustrate how a broader range of evidence – including the ethnographic – can highlight relational aspects of ‘health systems performance’, including how systems performance targets and indicators engender particular logics and exchanges of labour, power and capital within the health system.  Conversely, we are looking for contributions that elucidate how ‘systems thinking’ and method might drive anthropological analysis across different scales and introduce complexity into the study of classification, routines, and relations of health care.


The Social Science & Medicine link to the longer description and guidelines for submission is at:


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