Healthy lives: technologies, policies and experiences


ESHMS 16th biennial congress
University of Geneva, 27-29 June 2016


Healthy lives: technologies, policies and experiences

In European societies, the imperative of good health keeps expanding. Health literacy, developments in personalized medicine, health and illness self-monitoring through mobile information and communication technologies, shared medical decision making, rising individualization of risks in health insurances, all support the normative importance of leading healthy lives. In daily life and in encounters with healthcare institutions, individuals are expected to manage their own health through the adoption of healthy behaviours and/or endorsement of patient-centred and family focused care. Healthism, self-surveillance and individual regulation affect the experience of healthy and ill individuals, their relationships with healthcare professionals, but also public health policies and the monitoring of population health. At the same time, different social trends challenge this dominant discourse. Unfavourable conditions in childhood, socioeconomic inequalities, instability of family ties, increasing requirements in job performance, inequalities in access to health care and growing difficulties associated with ageing limit the ability to lead healthy lives. Furthermore, some individuals deliberately challenge the imperative for health and youth, by refusing medical treatments or disease screening, by adopting risky behaviours, or by criticizing health-sustaining technologies and strategies. The conference aims to address the dominant norm of leading healthy lives (technologies, policies and experiences) and to consider the different resources used to reach ‘health’.


Conference programme

Book of Abstracts

Best paper prizes (2 winners)

  • Heini Väisänen, University of Southampton, United Kingdom: Timing of abortions, births and relationship transitions in Finland
  • Katrijn Delaruelle, Ghent University, Belgium: The reversed gender gap and the education gradient in health: A cohort perspective

Best poster prize

  • Laura Kestilä, National Institute for Health and Welfare, Finland: Childhood advrsities and socioeconimic position as preidctors of leisure-time physical inactivity in early adulthood