Regulatory bottlenecks in global health


  • Dr Adele Langlois

    University of Lincoln

Project summary

Health regulations face hurdles at every stage – through conception, drafting, adoption and implementation. Even where there is a clear case for regulation, some may not get beyond the idea stage while others suffer from weak or ambiguous content or patchy implementation. This means that important health issues are poorly regulated – or even unregulated.

I shall examine regulatory bottlenecks in global health by developing an initial theoretical framework concept that draws on the literature from international relations and related fields. I will conduct a pilot case study on UNESCO’s stymied proposal for a convention on health data privacy and identify other instances of regulatory stasis in global health institutions such as the World Health Organization and the World Medical Association.

The findings will be used to develop further research that will focus on the concept of the regulatory bottleneck and ‘life histories’ of historical and contemporary bottlenecks in global health. This will help us understand why these bottlenecks occur at different stages. I will also engage with scholars and practitioners to find ways to overcome and avoid them.