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Arguably, a complexity approach to human health is meant to provide more, and better, understanding of the complex phenomenon of human health. But how does a complexity approach fare with the need of the policy world of easy solutions? Can we still provide simple solutions if we know that problems are complex? If not, how should we set up a healthy inter-sectoral dialogue?

Event details of Complex problems vs easy solutions (online)
Date 6 December 2022
Time 14:00 -15:00
Organised by Federica Russo , Karien Stronks


Brian Castellani, Frank Cobelens

About the series

Health is notoriously a complex phenomenon. Questions about what health and disease are, how they spread across individuals and populations, and how we can intervene to reduce the burden of disease have been approached from very different disciplinary, conceptual, and methodological perspective. In this seminar series, we continue the conversation on human health complexity that was initiated at IAS during Spring 2022. We focus on questions about problems, concepts & methods, and data. Our goal is to contribute to exchanging ideas and approaches, and gradually building what may be called distinctively a ‘complexity approach’ in the health sciences.

The series is composed of 1 on-site event and of 3 online events with the following dates and topics.

Scheduled sessions

  • 11.10.2022, 14:30 - 17:00 (on-site): Human Health Complexity: problems, concepts & methods, data
  • 08.11.2022, 14:00 - 15:00 (online): Methodological pluralism in the health sciences: maximizing understanding or multiplying complexity?
  • 22.11.2022, 15:00 - 16:00 (online): Which data to collect? Volume vs type
  • 06.12.2022, 14:00 - 15:00 (online): Complex problems vs easy solutions 

Please register for each session separately, as we aim to keep the group to a manageable size.