I am a social scientist, communications specialist, health information professional, information manager, librarian, instructor, development professional, change agent…and being so many things, I have difficulty coming up with a description of my seemingly eclectic interests and how they all come together. What thread weaves them all together? It’s not one thread but a tangled web that includes:
- the social: ultimately, everything I learn and do revolves around people. Health is about people. So, I am interested in how to keep people well where health is not simply the absence of disease. How do we do that? Cost-effectively? How do people influence one another?
- the knowledge: how do we equip health professionals with unbiased evidence based information to make treatment decisions? how do we arm consumers with the accessible information they need without overwhelming them?
- the environment: how do we educate health professionals to treat their patients as partners? How do we support health consumers in taking responsibility for their decisions? How can government policies help or hinder consumers in bettering their health?
- the tools: what tools do we use to disseminate knowledge? What is the role of traditional media and now social media in all this – and what potential does it present as not just a dissemination channel but a behavioural change agent?
- the globe: the world is increasingly a gobal village and I am a global citizen. In this shrinking but diverse world we live in, how does culture influence how people view their health? What global projects are devoted to improving health outcomes and why do they succeed or fail?