The World Health Organization (WHO)

By Kelley Lee

© 2008 – Routledge

164 pages | 3 B/W Illus.

Purchasing Options:
Paperback: 9780415370134
pub: 2008-08-21
US Dollars$33.95
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Hardback: 9780415370172
pub: 2008-08-21
US Dollars$155.00
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e–Inspection Copy

About the Book

The World Health Organization (WHO), as the United Nations specialized agency for health, has been at the centre of international health cooperation for over sixty years. With origins dating from the nineteenth century, WHO’s mandate is the attainment by all people of the highest possible level of health. The huge challenge of fulfilling this objective has not only required high-level technical skills, but has led the organization to engage with a broad range of political and economic interests. WHO has enjoyed many high-profile successes such as the global eradication of smallpox and SARS, and ongoing campaigns against polio and other diseases. On other issues, such as essential drugs, tobacco control and diet and nutrition, efforts to tackle the broader determinants of health has brought the organization into contact with issues such as globalization, poverty, social justice and human rights.

Kelley Lee analyzes the WHO’s role in international cooperation, examining its changing structures, key programmes and individuals. Of particular focus are the challenges WHO has faced in recent years given the emergence of other global health initiatives and how WHO has sought to remain effective as the "world’s health conscience" within an increasingly complex global context.

Table of Contents

Introduction 1. Creation of the World Health Organization 2. Structure and functions 3. Global campaigns against disease 4. Tackling the broad determinants of health 5. From international to global health

About the Author

Kelley Lee is Reader in Global Health at the London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine. Her research focuses on communicable and noncommunicable diseases, and the implications for global governance. Her books include Globalization and Health: An Introduction (2003) and Global Change and Health (2005).

About the Series

Global Institutions

The "Global Institutions Series" is edited by Thomas G. Weiss (The CUNY Graduate Center, New York, USA) and Rorden Wilkinson (University of Sussex, UK).

The Series has three "streams" identified by one of three cover colors:

  • Blue covers offer comprehensive, accessible, and informative guides to the history, structure, and activities of key international organizations, and introductions to topics of key importance in contemporary global governance. Recognized experts use a similar structure to address the general purpose and rationale for specific organizations along with historical developments, membership, structure, decision-making procedures, key functions, and an annotated bibliography and guide to electronic sources.
  • Red covers consist of research monographs and edited collections that advance knowledge about one aspect of global governance; they reflect a wide variety of intellectual orientations, theoretical persuasions, and methodological approaches.
  • Green covers will soon offer one-stop accounts for the major theoretical approaches to global governance and international organization.

Together these streams provide a coherent and complementary portrait of the problems, prospects, and possibilities confronting global institutions today.

Learn more…

Subject Categories

BISAC Subject Codes/Headings:
POL000000
POLITICAL SCIENCE / General
POL041000
POLITICAL SCIENCE / NGOs (Non-Governmental Organizations)