- Economic anthropology
- Global health as part of development theory
- Research methods
- Geographical focus: Latin America and Western Europe
My research is concerned with the intersection of economics and global health. This intersection is particularly fascinating since it is where the values and logics of markets meet alternative values and logics derived from human dignity.
At UiO I will draw on my past research on development, economics and pandemic preparedness to work with the Global Health Politics research group. Here I will study how public-private cooperation for pandemic preparedness works in the field of COVID-19 vaccine financing. In doing this, I am interested in developing mixed research methods.
For my PhD at the University of Cambridge I studied the working lives of German management consultants, who were mostly operating in the fields of healthcare and finance. I published a book about their work, entitled “Work sleep repeat”, arguing that much of what consultants do can be explained with reference to the abstract nature of their labour. The book won the LSE Monographs/2016 Bloomsbury First Book Competition and it includes chapters on power, epistemology, commodification, temporality, uncertainty and critique.
During a first year of postdoctoral research in the UK I studied what we mean by “impact”, a question that both consultants and UK academics were very concerned with. Both groups of people need to ensure, measure and prove the impact of their work, either to the clients who hire them or to government administrators who control their budgets. The question of what impact may be continues to matter in my current writing on global health.
Subsequently, I spent three years living between Edinburgh and Port-au-Prince, to learn about the fight against cholera in Haiti and the role of the World Bank within that. I will publish some of the material from this time while at the University of Oslo.
When COVID-19 struck in early 2020, I spent another six months at the University of Edinburgh, to work for the TIBA research programme, where I investigated how SARS-CoV-2 affects Sub-Saharan Africa, and what international aid agencies do to control the pandemic.
I hold an MPhil in Development Studies from the University of Oxford and an MPhil and PhD in Social Anthropology from the University of Cambridge (2016). I spent one year as postdoctoral researcher at the Department of Social Anthropology at the University of Cambridge (2016-2017). Thereafter, I joined the Usher Institute at the University of Edinburgh for three years (2017-2019) as part of a Global Health Governance research project, led by Prof. Devi Sridhar and funded by the Wellcome Trust. In 2020 I spent 6 months with the TIBA research programme at the University of Edinburgh before moving to the Centre University of Oslo.
Since 2019 I have been Affiliated Lecturer at the Social Anthropology Department at the University of Cambridge. There, I serve as the managing editor of the Cambridge Encyclopedia of Anthropology, an open-access encyclopedia that I had co-founded as a PhD student.
2019 Usher Institute Recognition Award “For Excellence in External Engagement and creating a respectful, inclusive working environment”.
2016 Winner of the LSE Monographs on Social Anthropology/Bloomsbury First Book Competition.
2015 Winner of ‘Best Graduate Essay in Political and Legal Anthropology’, by the Association for Political and Legal Anthropology.
I have taught Social Anthropology at the University of Cambridge (2014-2016) and the Université d’État d’Haïti (2019). I have also given lectures on Global Health at the University of Edinburgh (2017-2019), and been a guest lecturer on political economy at the University of Warwick (2015).
Further publications: www.felixstein.net