Contagion and Conflict
January 30, 2000
In recent years, it has become clear that policymakers and analysts concerned with national security must focus on the intersections of health and international security. What is not clear is how they should think about these issues. Should their approach be one of dealing with a series of ad hoc questions, or should they focus on a conceptual integrity to these issues that facilitates more integrated assessment and decisionmaking processes? The solution could have important implications for the nature and quality of policy measures that may be developed; the success achieved in implementing them; and the effective allocation of resources to support them. Accordingly, this report addresses three key questions:
1. What are the key intersections of health and security at the state and international levels?
2. What are the critical dimensions of the health/security interface?
3. What policy challenges does the interaction of health and security create, and what approaches most effectively address this relationship between health and security?
The analysis emphasizes that consideration of the relationship between health and security is only in its formative stages. There are many questions that will require additional careful attention and analysis in the period ahead. It is hoped that this report will stimulate further investigation of the challenges that emerge from this relationship that will confront governments and individuals alike for many years to come.