13 – Global Health

The process of globalisation affects more and more the life quality of people around the world. In particular it impinges in different ways upon their health. In its turn the health of people affects the demographic and economic growth as well as their sustainability. However, notwithstanding the fundamental importance of this feedback, the nexus between globalisation, sustainable development and health has been insufficiently analysed.

This paper aims to explore the main channels of influence through which the recent process of globalisation has affected the health of people, exerting an important influence on the sustainability of world development. To this end we try to identify the principal, direct and indirect, empirical correlations between the main features of globalisation and different indices of health; we proceed then to a preliminary discussion of their causal contents. The indirect correlations run in both directions.

This feature turns out to be particularly important since the feed-back between the main intermediate variables (income growth, income inequality and environmental degradation) and different aspects of health plays a crucial role in determining the sustainability of world development.