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Oscar Javier Maldonado Castañeda

Research student

Oscar Javier Maldonado Castañeda

Research overview

I am a sociologist, my research area is science and technology studies. I am interesed in the relations between technoscience, expertise and policymaking. I think one of the most interesting fields to trace such complexities in contemporary societies is health and biomedical science. Currently, my work is focused on the analysis of production of health policies as socio-technical arrangements. 

Thesis Title

Experts, Expertise and Policy construction: The case of HPV and Cervical Cancer global policy

Thesis Outline

This research discusses about the relationship between policy order, regulatory practices and technical domain in the case of HPV vaccination global policy. The policies are engaged with different materialities in the establishment of control strategies for cervical cancer in local realities. In these realities national boundaries matter because of the restriction that the political orders may impose in the transit and circulation of persons and things through techno-legal settings.                                           

This research analyzes the introduction of HPV vaccines in the Global South, taking as case study the experience of Colombia. The main question is: how does the HPV vaccine leave the laboratory and become a public health tool? I discuss the complex network of relations that support HPV vaccination policy, and identify the negotiation spaces in which public problems face scientifical and technical knowledge and where policies are defined in this case.

I would like to describe how HPV Vaccine is crafted as a matter of concern and the materialities that constituting this process. I am going to focus in the following locations: The trials design, The licensing process and the policymaking regarding HPV vaccines taking as reference the colombian experience. I would like to analyse how “these locations, knowledges and matters interfere with one another; and how they co-exist in various forms of relation, tension and disjunction” (Moser 2008: 99). In particular I am going to focus on the analysis of epidemiological studies about types of HPV and cervical cancer and its relation with the globalisation of HPV vaccines and the different policies related. These studies are a key factor in the co-production of gender, disease and in the transits of vaccines and policies through national-state boundaries.


Sociologist. M.A. Sociology, Universidad Nacional de Colombia. 

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