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GEO3161 : Humanitarianism and Health Inequalities

  • Offered for Year: 2022/23
  • Module Leader(s): Dr Kathryn Manzo
  • Lecturer: Dr Alison Copeland
  • Owning School: Geography, Politics & Sociology
  • Teaching Location: Newcastle City Campus
Semester 1 Credit Value: 20
ECTS Credits: 10.0


This module aims to explore the social geographies and spatial practices associated with humanitarianism and health in both theory and practice. Working across different scales (from the global to the national) the module investigates health inequalities among various populations, notably displaced persons – on land and at sea - and national populations. In addition to the reality and causes of health inequalities, the module also explores health interventions in different settings as well as other possible solutions to identified problems.

Outline Of Syllabus

Syllabus (11 weeks, 33 hours)
Intro to the course (KM and AL)

Part One: Humanitarianism and Health (KM)
Visualising Humanitarianism
Humanitarianism in theory and practice
Humanitarian communication and advocacy
Assessment workshop 1: Report writing
Humanitarian assistance, conflict and intervention

Seminar 1: Refugees and representation: The iconic image of Aylan Kurdi
Protection, conflict and rescue

Seminar 2: Refugee camps: Migration management, protection and healthcare
Part Two: Global Health, Public Health
Global health problems
Global health solutions
‘Ring a ring o’roses’ - the geography of infectious diseases and the re-emergence of diseases
Assessment workshop 2: Group presentations: expectations and requirements
‘Mind the Gap’ – Inequalities in health in the UK

Seminar 3: Poverty, inequality and health
‘The end is nigh?’ Healthcare policy and provision in the UK ‘

Seminar 4: Group presentations

Teaching Methods

Teaching Activities
Category Activity Number Length Student Hours Comment
Guided Independent StudyAssessment preparation and completion152:0052:00N/A
Scheduled Learning And Teaching ActivitiesLecture112:0022:00PiP lecture S1
Scheduled Learning And Teaching ActivitiesSmall group teaching41:004:00in-person content
Structured Guided LearningStructured research and reading activities42:008:00Preparation for and Reflections and learning from seminars
Scheduled Learning And Teaching ActivitiesSmall group teaching41:004:00Group presentations in-person (semester 1).
Scheduled Learning And Teaching ActivitiesDrop-in/surgery41:004:00Drop-in/ Surgery semester 1 (online)
Guided Independent StudyIndependent study1106:00106:00N/A
Teaching Rationale And Relationship


Assessment Methods

The format of resits will be determined by the Board of Examiners

Other Assessment
Description Semester When Set Percentage Comment
Oral Examination1M25Group presentation
Report1M75Written individual report
Assessment Rationale And Relationship

The written assignment requires students to engage critically with both academic writings and published reports by key institutions, policymakers and healthcare providers (such as various United Nations agencies and the NHS in the UK). The assignment assesses students’ ability to apply key concepts in a policy relevant format – a key transferable skill as well as an intellectual challenge.
The group presentation will enable students to work together as a team (another transferable skill) and to appreciate the knowledge transfer challenges faced by public health experts. Although dissemination is not required, students will be encouraged to share their findings with relevant stakeholders in the fields of humanitarianism and public health.

Reading Lists