Medical research versus disease burden in Africa

Confraria, Hugo and Wang, Lili (2020) Medical research versus disease burden in Africa. Research Policy, 49 (3). a103916. ISSN 0048-7333

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Africa is a continent facing severe, urgent, and often unique health challenges. At the same time, in most African countries, national research funding is very limited and research systems are usually dependent on international research funding and collaboration. Therefore, in this context, there are worries that foreign partners will dominate medical research agendas, which may take research away from being relevant to specific local health needs. In this article, we investigate whether the distribution of medical research priorities and investment in medical research, across diseases in Africa, is related to the disease burden of local populations between 2006 and 2015. Our results show that, although African medical research capacity is still very weak and greatly dependent on public non-African and philanthropic funders, medical research specialisation in sub-Saharan Africa is generally associated with its disease burden. Our results are interesting because they indicate that although there are misalignments at the global level between research priorities and disease burden in absolute terms, in sub-Saharan Africa, there is no clear trade-off between participating in global research networks and producing medical research that is aligned with local health needs.

Item Type: Article
Keywords: Research priorities, disease burden, science policy, Africa, research funding
Schools and Departments: University of Sussex Business School > SPRU - Science Policy Research Unit
Subjects: H Social Sciences
R Medicine > RA Public aspects of medicine > RA0001 Medicine and the state. Including medical statistics, medical economics, provisions for medical care, medical sociology
Depositing User: Hugo Confraria
Date Deposited: 21 Jan 2020 09:33
Last Modified: 23 Jan 2020 08:15

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