Final Spring Webinar

The final PANSOC webinar of the semester will be on 27 April at 1600 Oslo time. Dr. Marcia Anderson will present: “The Impacts of the COVID-19 Pandemic for First Nations Peoples and Communities: the role of leadership and governance in addressing policy gaps and barriers to access.” Contact for a link.

Dr. Marcia Anderson is Cree-Anishinaabe and grew up in the North End of Winnipeg. Her family roots go to Peguis First Nation and Norway House Cree Nation in Manitoba. She practices both Internal Medicine and Public Health. She is the Vice-Dean, Indigenous Health, Social Justice and Anti-Racism and the Executive Director of Indigenous Academic Affairs in the Ongomiizwin Indigenous Institute of Health and Healing, Rady Faculty of Health Sciences, University of Manitoba. She serves as the Chair of the Indigenous Health Committee of the Association of Faculties of Medicine of Canada and the Chair of the National Consortium for Indigenous Medical Education. She was recognized for her contributions to Indigenous Peoples health with a National Aboriginal Achievement Award in March 2011. In 2018 and 2022 she was named one of the 100 most powerful women in Canada by the Women’s Executive Network. In 2021 she received the Royal College of Physicians and Surgeons Dr. Thomas Dignan Indigenous Health Award, and in 2022 was named the Doctors Manitoba Physician of the Year. She was also the recipient of a Community Development Award from the Mahatma Gandhi Centre of Canada and the Lieutenant Governor’s Award for Excellence in Public Administration in 2022.

The PANSOC webinar series returns!

On 20 April at 1600 CET, Courtney Heffernan, University of Alberta, will present: “Tuberculosis elimination in low prevalence settings: research and implementation.”

Courtney will talk about the implications of an unfinished pandemic (TB) on underserved populations in high-income settings; i.e. for Canada TB disproportionately affects Indigenous peoples and migrants, but strategic efforts to succeed are different for each. Among the former, snuffing out transmission and outbreaks remain paramount while for the latter expanding screening and prophylaxis to prevent reactivation is key. Determining the feasibility of screening and treating TB infection in migrants is so important to achieve elimination since the reservoirs are being replenished by imported prevalent infections. Meanwhile, Canada is setting increasingly ambitious targets for immigration (500,000 per annum by 2025, which is ~double the annual average for the last 20 yrs) with no strategic plan for TB. 

Courtney Heffernan has a PhD in Medicine from the University of Alberta, and since 2010 she has been working as the manager of the Tuberculosis Program Evaluation and Research Unit there. Her work is focused on pulmonary tuberculosis, and elimination with an emphasis on transmission. She is a member of STOP TB Canada’s Steering Committee, and the CDC’s TB Trials Consortium’s Implementation and Quality Committee. 

Contact for a link.

Upcoming webinar

On 23 March at 1600 CET, Helga E. Bories-Sawala will present: “The forgotten pandemic that created today’s America. A look at the history textbooks of Québec.” (Contact for a link.)

COVID-19 has been compared with other pandemics in history, but only very rarely to the “virgin soil epidemics” and their impact on Native societies who had no immunisation against these diseases of European origin. This paper studies some of these rare contributions. It then traces the coverage of epidemics among First Nations in textbooks on Québec’s national history across different curricula, as well as in two Indigenous textbooks. The textbook analysis is complemented by examining student understanding of this topic through student essays. Despite an increased effort to take into account the Indigenous perspective, we see that this aspect still remains marginalized, and appears more as collateral damage of colonization than in its role as a crucial accelerator. The microbial shock barely figures in the current educational program in Québec. In contrast, both the recommendations of the First Nations Education Council and Indigenous textbooks insist on the decisive historical role of these epidemics. 


Emeritierte Professorin für Sozialgeschichte Frankreichs und frankophoner Länder an der Universität Bremen, Mit-Gründerin des Bremer Instituts für Kanada- und Québec-Studien, assoziierte Professorin an den Universitäten Sorbonne Paris-Nord und Université de Montréal. Ausgezeichnet mit dem Prix A.-M. Boucher der Association internationale des études québécoises et dem Diefenbaker-Preis 2014-5 des Conseil des Arts du Canada für ein Forschungsprojekt über den Platz der Indigenen im Geschichtsunterricht Québecs, mit Thibault Martin (†) von der Université du Québec en Outaouais. 

Professeure émérite d’histoire et de civilisation françaises et francophones à l’université de Brême, Co-Fondatrice de l’Institut brêmois d’Etudes canadiennes et québécoises, Professeure associée de l’université Sorbonne Paris-Nord et de l’Université de Montréal. Récipiendaire du prix A.-M. Boucher de l’Association internationale des études québécoises et de la bourse Diefenbaker 2014-5 du Conseil des Arts du Canada pour un projet de recherche sur la place des Autochtones dans l’enseignement de l’histoire nationale du Québec avec Thibault Martin (†) de l’Université du Québec en Outaouais. 

Emeritus professor of French and francophone history at Bremen University, co-founder of the Bremen Institute of Canada and Québec Studies, associate professor at the Université Sorbonne Paris-Nord and the Université de Montréal. Recipient of the prix A.-M. Boucher of the Association internationale des études québécoises and the Diefenbaker Award 2014-15 of the Canada Council for the Arts for a research project on the representation of First Nations in history teaching in Québec, with Thibault Martin (†) of the Université du Québec en Outaouais. 

Next PANSOC Webinar

On 16 March at 1600 Oslo time*, Elisa Perego, University College London, will present “Long Covid: history, research, future challenges.”

SARS-CoV-2 is now recognized as a virus associated with high mortality and morbidity. The Covid pandemic has left behind a death toll of several millions, and counting. Many more people, however, never fully recovered from their initial infection and suffer from prolonged symptoms, signs and sequelae –what patients themselves named Long Covid and brought into the spotlight in the early pandemic months. In the first part of the talk, I will detail the rise of Long Covid as a patient-led research and advocacy movement in 2020. In the second part, I will address where we stand now with research on Long Covid as a disease –and how we can best move things forward. Finally, I will address the role of Long Covid in relation to prolonged diseases and sequelae associated with other viral infections, like following the first SARS (Long SARS) and pandemic influenza (Long Flu).  

Elisa Perego (MA, PhD) is Honorary Research Fellow at University College London and a Long Covid Kids Champion for the UK Charity Long Covid Kids. She was in hard-hit Lombardy, Italy, during the first Covid wave. Since then, Elisa has contributed to research, policy and science communication on the long-term health effects of SARS-CoV-2 infection. She took part to the landmark WHO meeting of August 2020, which openly recognized Long Covid. She coined the term Long Covid.  

Contact for a link.

*While some areas will be “springing forward” this coming weekend, we do not do so for a couple weeks still, so be sure to check your time zone conversions!

Next PANSOC webinar

On 2 March at 1600 CET, Luissa Vahedi, Washington University in St. Louis, will present: “COVID-19 and Violence against Women and Girls: Understanding Synergies, Long-term Consequences, and Lessons Learned for a More Equitable Future.”

The COVID-19 pandemic has drawn attention to the often-hidden issue of violence against women and girls.  Three years into the COVID-19 pandemic, what have we learned about how and why violence against women and girls increases during periods of crisis and where do we go from here? Drawing on syndemic theory and two case studies from the Latin American context, this webinar will discuss what social and political conditions increase the risk for violence against women and girls during a pandemic context and what social policy can do to address threats to women and girls’ safety. The webinar will also engage with the long term and negative consequences of the COVID-19 pandemic on violence prevention and response systems in low- and middle-income countries, with a focus on what violence protection organizations need to strengthen their efforts in the face of future threats.

Luissa Vahedi is a Social Epidemiologist and current Doctoral candidate in Public Health Sciences. Her research, scholarship, and policy work applies the methods and frameworks of social epidemiology to address complex global health issues including gender based violence, mental health, and infectious disease in fragile settings.

Since 2017, Luissa has worked both within and outside of academia conducting specialized research pertaining to systematic evidence reviews, advanced quantitative and qualitative analysis, the integration of gender and violence protections within social policy and humanitarian programming, and syndemic health disparities.

Luissa’s passions lie at the nexus of mixing research methods to capture population based data with rich lived experience and developing best practices for translating public health research into policy and practice.

Contact for a link.

Two new videos

Have you missed recent webinars? Catch up here:

Marama Muru-Lanning, University of Auckland, “Hongi (pressing of noses), Harirū (handshakes) and Hau (sharing breath): In the time of COVID-19.”:

Mikaela Adams, University of Mississippi, “Influenza in Indian Country: Indigenous Sickness and Federal Responsibility during the 1918-1920 Pandemic.”:

And other past webinars here:

Upcoming webinar

On 16 February at 1600 CET, Mikaëla Adams, University of Mississippi, will present: “Influenza in Indian Country: Indigenous Sickness and Federal Responsibility during the 1918-1920 Pandemic.”

The so-called “Spanish flu,” a deadly new strain of avian influenza that first emerged sometime in the early spring of 1918, infected global populations with shocking intensity and devastating results. By 1920, a third of the global population had contracted the disease and at least fifty million people had died from it, including more than 675,000 in the United States. Indian Country—the areas within the United States inhabited by the nation’s Indigenous peoples—was particularly hard hit. According to a 1919 report, at least 78,177 Native people caught influenza and 6,632 died out of a population of just 320,654. This Indigenous mortality rate of 2.1% was nearly four times higher than that of the nation’s large cities. My current research project traces the history of the influenza pandemic in Indian Country. In this presentation, I will discuss the ways in which the economic, cultural, and racial marginalization of Native people in early twentieth-century America limited their access to medical care and contributed to their disproportionate mortality rate during the outbreak. I will also outline some of lessons we might draw from that experience when we consider the ongoing health needs of marginalized communities today, especially in the midst of the COVID-19 crisis.

Mikaëla M. Adams is an adjunct associate professor of Native American history for the University of Mississippi. She received her Ph.D. in History from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill in 2012. Her first book, Who Belongs? Race, Resources, and Tribal Citizenship in the Native South, which was published by Oxford University Press in 2016, explores themes of Indigenous identity, citizenship, and sovereignty in the Jim Crow South. Her current project examines the influenza pandemic of 1918-1920 in Indian Country. She also has published articles in the Florida Historical Quarterly, the South Carolina Historical Magazine, the American Indian Quarterly, and the Native South.

Contact for the link.