Capacity strengthening for social science-informed interventions

Our assessment of responses to the latest epidemics showed that in order to enhance the social science contributions to infectious threat prevention and control, including AMR, there is a need to extend social science capacity through producing teaching materials.

In Sonar-Global WP5, where we aim to fulfill this need to strengthen the capacity for social science-informed interventions, we produced several curricula for a selection of audiences based on a mapping process.

Mapping of existing teaching materials and perceived needs:

The first step in the capacity-building process was an assessment of the training infrastructures and materials already developed to teach the social science dimension of infectious threats. As well as getting a better feel for the needs that are out there in terms of getting to know the relevant social dimensions within this field. This was done by interviewing some key people in the field, complemented by information gathered through the registration form on our platform, a survey, and an extended online search. A comprehensive database was developed based on the results of this mapping.


SPECIAL-SOC curricula for social scientists:

Based on the outcomes of the mapping and supplemented by the input from various experts within the field, two curricula were developed: The SPECIAL-SOC curricula offer knowledge in the social and medical sciences on AMR or Epidemics to non-specialized social scientists, to enhance their general expertise in this field and their capacity to conduct research and teach.

Learn more about the SPECIAL SOC AMR curriculum

Learn more about the SPECIAL SOC Epidemics curriculum

Based on the SPECIAL SOC AMR, and as a complementary part of the OPERATE SOC AMR, we developed a MOOC (Massive Open Online Course) on the Social Dimensions of Antimicrobial Resistance. This MOOC is available on Coursera and is hosted by the University of Amsterdam.


OPERATE-SOC curricula for non-social scientists:

Following the same process (mapping, writing of teaching materials, and developing teaching materials) as for the SPECIAL-SOC, we developed two OPERATE-SOC curricula for non-social scientists. OPERATE-SOC offers operational knowledge on social aspects of AMR or Epidemics to non-social scientists working in relevant fields, to enable them to use social science intelligence and collaborate with social scientists. See our blog post on the OPERATE SOC AMR needs assessment.

Learn more about the OPERATE SOC AMR curriculum

Learn more about the OPERATE SOC Epidemics curriculum



In order to provide capacity building on short notice to be able to respond to current outbreaks or insights within the field several podcasts (EPICAST), were developed during the stretch of the project.

EPICAST podcast is available on our website and on Apple PodcastSpotify, and Google Podcast.

Learn more about the EPICAST podcast


Advisory scientific committees:

Two committees – one on AMR and one on Epidemics – supported the curricula development process. They provided scientific advice on draft teaching materials, contributed to content development, and validated final versions.

AMR committee members:
Stephanie Begemann (University of Liverpool)
Clare Chandler (London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine)
Sarah Edwards (University College London)
Nicolas Fortané (Institute National de la Recherche Agronomique)
Helen Lambert (University of Bristol)
Vincent Martin (Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations)
Louise Munkholm (Roskilde University)
Susan Nayiga (Infectious Diseases Research Collaboration)
Carla Rodrigues (University of Bristol/Amsterdam)
Constance Schultz (Amsterdam Institute for Global Health and Development)
Luechai Sringernyuang (Mahidol University)

Epidemics committee members:
Sharon Abramowitz (Independent consultant)
Julienne Anoko (World Health Organization)
Kevin Bardosh (University of Florida)
Juliet Bedford (Anthrologica)
Benjamin Djoudalbaye (Africa Centers for Disease Control and Prevention)
Marc Egrot (Institut de Recherche pour le Développement)
Alain Epelboin (Centre National de la Recherche Scientifique)
Roch Houngnihin (Université d’abomey-Calavi)
Latifa Imane (Ingénieure pédagogique indépendante)
Heidi Larson (London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine)
Shelley Lees (London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine)
Frédéric Le Marcis (Institut de Recherche pour le Développement)
Anne Marie Moulin (Centre National de la Recherche Scientifique)
Hana Rohan (London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine)
Kelley Sams (University of Florida)
Noemi Tousignant (University College London)

A note on language
Select language