KREIMER Pablo Rafael
Co-producing Social Problems and Scientific Knowledge: Chagas Disease and the Dynamics of Research Fields in Latin America
Sociology of Science Yearbook
Lugar: Dordrecht; Año: 2015 p. 173 - 190
How to approach the relationship between the practices of scientific knowledge production and the emergence and solution of social problems and how to build a bridge between apparently very "local? social issues and global scientific research? What are the particular features of these processes in Latin America, considered as a ?non hegemonic region? (Losego & Arvanitis, 2008)? I intend in this paper to analyze these relationships by highlighting the different aspects involved, such as social ways of public theming and articulation of social problems, strategies for "mobilization" of scientific knowledge as a way to address these problems, and the role of scientific knowledge itself in the definition of public discourse and policies. These issues are necessarily accompanied by others: the local history of research traditions in different scientific fields, the tensions between social uses of knowledge and the relationships with the international scientific mainstream, tensions that are historically present in peripheral contexts. To illustrate these questions l will consider a very significant case: the double emergence (or coproduction) of Chagas disease as a scientific topic and as a public problem during the 20th century in Argentina. The question has a particular interest because this disease only exists in Latin America, and has been a relevant scientific subject for several research fields.