MPRC Seminar: Improving Maternal Health through Social Accountability in Nigeria
About the Presentation
In this talk Dr. Robinson will present an analysis of a campaign to improve maternal health through citizen-led accountability in Niger State, Nigeria. Here, the TFR is six, less than a third of births are attended by a skilled provider, and only a quarter of 1-2 year-olds have all vaccinations. Led by the NGO White Ribbon Alliance Nigeria, the goal of the campaign is to teach and encourage citizens to demand for better health services. The NGO has thus facilitated community dialogues (where community members meet to discuss about what they desire), town halls (between community members, elected officials, and representatives of the State Ministry of Health), and the training of citizen journalists (intended to document breaches of protocol in maternal care). These efforts are occurring in the midst of a national effort to increase usage of primary health care services. Based on interviews conducted in Niger State during July 2017, Dr. Robinson will present findings regarding the apparent successes of this campaign as well as challenges for sustaining it and improvements to maternal health going forward.
About the Speaker:
Rachel Sullivan Robinson is an associate professor in the School of International Service at American University. She holds a PhD in sociology and demography from the University of California at Berkeley and has more than 15 years of experience studying global health interventions in sub-Saharan Africa, including family planning, HIV/AIDS, and sexuality education. Her book, Intimate Interventions in Global Health, was just published by Cambridge University Press in 2017. Her work has also be published in Demography, Journal of the International AIDS Society, Population Studies, and Population Research and Policy Review. She has conducted field research in Namibia, Malawi, Nigeria, and Senegal, and current projects relate to politicized homophobia in sub-Saharan Africa and the extent of social science knowledge on NGOs. Her research has been funded by the MacArthur Foundation, the Council of American Overseas Research Centers, and the National Science Foundation.