The Action for Reset Dialogues - Episode VII : Knowledge


Has the CoVID-19 pandemic provoked a fundamental shift in the notions of ‘knowledge’ and ‘expertise’ in global health? Are we living an era in which some basic assumptions and myths in global health will be challenged? Are the balances of knowledge, power and responsibility irrevocably altered by the new practical realities of our corona-times?

In this episode of the Action for Reset Dialogues, Seye Abimbola (University of Sydney and Editor in Chief of BMJ Global Health) and Mishal Khan (London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine & Aga Khan University) delve deeply into the rapidly changing knowledge arena around global health. They touch on some powerful realizations that have come to the fore once again: about the decentralized nature of knowledge, about the gaps between the knowledge of people and that embedded in systems, about the many social learning processes that are not yet captured by officialdom in academia or policy. They pose the key question of how better use could be made of the knowledge in communities and organizations of people. They examine what a broader, more context-sensitive and inclusive global health knowledge landscape could look like.


Dr. Seye Abimbola is a health systems researcher from Nigeria. He is currently senior lecturer at the School of Public Health, University of Sydney, Australia. He had his initial training in medicine at the Obafemi Awolowo University, Ile-Ife in Nigeria. He obtained his PhD from Sydney University in 2016, on a wide-ranging institutional analysis of primary health care governance in Nigeria. From 2018-2019, he was a Sidney Sax Overseas Early Career Fellow at the University of Oxford.Abimbola uses methods and theories from institutional economics to study community engagement in health governance, decentralized governance of health systems, and the role that governance plays in the adoption and scale-up of health system innovations. Abimbola is the editor in chief of BMJ Global Health. He is also a member of the Health Systems Governance Collaborative, and serves on the advisory council of Global Health 50/50. From September 2020 onwards he holds the Prince Claus Chair at Utrecht University.


Dr. Mishal Khan is a social epidemiologist with expertise in quantitative and qualitative health policy and systems research to improve infectious disease control programmes in South and Southeast Asia. In her research career, Mishal has worked closely with national disease control managers in Pakistan, Bangladesh, Cambodia, China, Myanmar and Kenya, focusing on research to inform resource allocation decisions. This builds upon her six-year experience of working in industry advising pharmaceutical companies on investment strategies.

Dr Khan leads research on: engagement with informal, for-profit healthcare providers; gender differences in access to health services; tuberculosis control; antimicrobial resistance; One Health; investments in research and development; strengthening human resources for health; and the policy process in low and middle-income countries.

Having received a Commonwealth Scholarship to complete her doctoral studies at the London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine, Mishal studied socio-economic and health systems factors influencing gender differences in TB notifications across Pakistan. She also holds a Masters degree in Control of Infectious Diseases from LSHTM and a Masters degree in Natural Sciences (Pathology) from the University of Cambridge.

Mishal is a section editor for the Health Policy and Planning journal and a research fellow at the Centre on Global Health Security at Chatham House, working closely with high level policy actors on institutional capacity building in low and middle income countries. She also holds an honorary appointment at the Aga Khan University in Karachi, Pakistan.

Access the Action for Reset Dialogue series