Home Institution

Emory University

Publication Date

Fall 2016

Program Name

Switzerland: International Studies and Multilateral Diplomacy


The 2009 H1N1 influenza pandemic, although not as deadly or long lasting as initially projected, demonstrated that the world was and is ill prepared to handle a mass pandemic. As the first pandemic of the twenty-first century, the pandemic revealed global health insecurities and asymmetrical disease burdens for disadvantaged individuals and countries. This paper will analyze why both developing countries and disadvantaged individuals suffered disproportionately from the pandemic. Using the framework of structural violence, this paper will investigate how socioeconomic and political disparities encountered before and during the pandemic caused differential health, societal, political, and economic outcomes. These preexisting disparities will be shown to be compounding and will be used to explain the true and unequal burden of disease. Finally, this paper will offer recommendations that can be used by policymakers to mitigate impacts faced by disadvantaged populations and to improve global health security.


Diseases | International and Area Studies | International Relations | Mass Communication | Medicine and Health | Political Science | Politics and Social Change | Social Influence and Political Communication | Sociology


Article Location