Release of the Global Health Governance Special Issue on the global AIDS response, guest-edited by Executive Director Michel Sidibé
23 December 2010
Innovations in governance are among the signature achievements of the AIDS response and these innovations have transformed the lives of people living with and affected by HIV. This is one of several key points covered in a compilation co-guest-edited by UNAIDS Executive Director, Michel Sidibé, published on 20 December in a special issue of Global Health Governance.
The overview paper, People, Passion & Politics: Looking Back and Moving Forward in the Governance of the AIDS Response, by Mr Sidibé and colleagues, presents a seven-point AIDS governance action agenda. At the core of the agenda are three mutually reinforcing principles: first, the exceptional role that affected people play to radically alter the construction of vulnerability; second, the pivotal importance that responses are essentially owned by the people that they are meant to serve, and; third, the force of movements and coalitions to tip the scales of power through creative approaches to framing, litigation and transnational political strategies.
Over the years, the greater participation of vulnerable groups in the global political arena has resulted in more relevant prevention programmes and unprecedented expansion of access to HIV prevention, treatment, care and support services. However, as the article highlights, fundamental shifts in the political and economic context call for yet new approaches; for example, engaging with the academic community to critically review the governance of HIV programmes and services and explore opportunities for advancing the AIDS agenda across all sectors.
The idea for this special issue of Global Health Governance was inspired by widespread recognition of the changes brought about to governance approaches as a result of the AIDS response and how other global challenges can benefit from the lessons learned in addressing the epidemic. Furthermore, the gradual shifts in global power, from the G8 to the G20, and from collective action to ‘hyper-collective action’, require advancements in the manner in which the AIDS response is governed.
Over the past three decades, the HIV response has been an engine of innovation. In so doing, it has delivered tangible results for people while opening and protecting space for more inclusive and rights-based governance of all challenges of the global commons.
Michel Sidibé, UNAIDS Executive Director
“Over the past three decades, the HIV response has been an engine of innovation,” reflects Mr Sidibé. “In so doing, it has delivered tangible results for people while opening and protecting space for more inclusive and rights-based governance of all challenges of the global commons. The changing global order demands that this engine doesn’t stop.”
Working together with the development community, the HIV response can continue to transform the way that it governs the complex challenges in advancing human development, rights and dignity, assert the authors. The papers in this special issue, contributed by people living with HIV, national AIDS programme managers, civil society activists, leading academics and others, provide a concrete step forward in strengthening the norms, rules, institutions and practices to solve long-standing collective action problems.
“We are extremely pleased to see the release of this special issue,” said Prof Yanzhong Huang, Senior Fellow for Global Health at the Council on Foreign Relations and editor of the journal. “Thanks to this special issue, we have a much better idea of how global health governance itself is being constantly shaped by the practice, programmes, and projects aimed at fighting HIV.”
The special issue of Global Health Governance can be accessed at: http://ghgj.org/Volume%20IV%20Issue%201.htm