This project aims to analyse the complex interplay of actors, policies, and projects that have shaped research into and control of Human African Trypanosomiasis (HAT) up to the present day. Research has mainly been steered from outside of Africa, firstly by colonial authorities and latterly by an array of agencies, foundations, and international organisations. Despite this, investment in research and control measures has declined and fragmented across Africa.
This project seeks to examine, in proper historical context and from a systematic perspective, the evolution of Africa’s HAT research apparatus, to gain insight into the relationship between science and development, and build understanding of how science can work better for development. The project will generate a panoptic, integrated analysis of the evolving HAT global assemblage in order to extend knowledge of: 1.) the evolving relationship between the organisation of science and the development of material technologies in developing country contexts; 2.) the relationship between policy and practice in mediating particular scientific and technological trajectories; and 3.) the nature of innovation, what it means in a developing country context, and how it may be promoted. This will significantly advance understanding of how science is practiced in developing countries, how technologies emerge, and ultimately how science and technological innovation can be organised to ensure development is transformational, not unobtainable.